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JUL/AUG 2011


us of S W F L

People of SWFL

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content Sarasota









14 Hotel Indigo 16 Your Style 18 Fashion News 20 ECHO Vintage Books & Vinyl 21 AFFORDABLE COOL CARS 26 All about the details 68 SLS AMG Roadster 70 Nested in the center 74 Eden Winery

Feature: People of SWFL




FO CM a g a z i n e

of S W F L

40Hymn For Her 42where are you going 44Food, Fun and changes at Latitude 46 …is worth a thousand words 48 Stuart Dunkin 50 Richard C. Carpenter 52 Jean Alesi 54 TORCH BISTRO 56 Amanda Adams 57 Lou Ann Kapcin 58 entourage 60 Café gelato 61 Scott Fischer 62 Dr Craig R. Sweet 63 Bill Davey 64 Darryl jones 65 Tyler offerman Publisher: Ann Gordon Cover by: Alex Singleton Cover Model: Teresa Garvalia Design: Contributors: Dan Myricks, Samantha Ramos, Kayla DaCosta, Pilar Corona, MoonyMann, Michelle Roche, Scott Black, Mai Yomioto, Paul Prather, Lina Lasalle, Anthony William, Samantha Scott, Salvatore Brancifort, Patrice Ferguson

10 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

Focus Magazine of SWFL is published Bi-Monthly. Articles do not necessarily reflect Focus Magazine policy. © 2010 Focus magazine of SWFL, All rights reserved. Reproduction in part or whole without permission is prohibited. Postmaster: Send all remittances and correspondences about subscriptions, undelivered copies and address changes to: Focus Magazine of SWFL at 105 Triple Diamond Blvd, Suite 101, Venice, FL 34275. Editorial, publishing and advertising offices.


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Maserati of Central Florida - 525 South Lake Destiny Drive - Orlando - Florida 32810 - 407.667.4300

Comfortably situated on the corner of Broadway Ave. and Main St. in Downtown Fort Myers rests Fort Myers’ most captivating hotel-Hotel Indigo. The highly rated establishment according to Tripadvisor and Expedia, features exquisite architecture, an abundance of amenities that provide guests with a remarkable stay, professional and passionate customer service, and prices that are near impossible to match for the extraordinary value offered at Hotel Indigo. The hotel site, which was constructed around two years ago, manifested from a historical garage that lines Broadway Avenue and Main Street; the physical hotel was an add on to the preexisting garage. The interior of the hotel includes attributes comparable to that of a relaxing island oasis. From the delicate white and blue walls to the portraiture of Florida Vegetation featured throughout guest floors, earth-colored wood flooring, and furniture designed comfortably for even great-grandmother, Hotel Indigo is a haven for paradise-cabana style relaxation. This stylish boutique hotel gives amenities a whole different meaning. The sixty-six-room hotel features luxury King rooms with an array of highlights including balcony rooms, sofa-sleeper rooms for travelers with multiple guests or families with children, seven suites located on the seventh floor with “to die for” views of Downtown Fort Myers. It goes without saying that the best view of the city is from a seventh floor suite at Hotel Indigo. Each room includes indulgences such as cuisine-style coffee, complimentary hi-speed Wi-Fi Internet, gourmet room service at the hand of the remarkable Vino Di Notte, the hotel restaurant serving an authentic cuisine with $5.00 breakfast and lunch specials, a fitness center with state of the art equipment, and a rooftop pool that makes catching a great tan easy and pleasurable.

Hotel Indigo A Slice of Downtown Fort Myers’ Finest!

By Kayla DaCosta

To boot, Hotel Indigo is a hotspot for local live events and community involvement. Each first Friday of the month the hotel takes part in the well-known Artwalk; accordingly, each third Saturday guests and civilians can look forward to getting groovy at Musicwalk. Between the Phi Lounge, a lobby-long bar, and Phi in the Sky, the hotel’s rooftop bar, live entertainment is never in short supply on these events. Each first Friday and third Saturday, the hotel features special rates for the enjoyment of locals and music and art lovers alike. Each day, both bars feature a hard-to-beat happy hour from 5pm-7pm. Happy hour includes half priced domestic draft beers, house wines, and well liquor, Whether your visiting Hotel Indigo to kick off your shoes and take a relaxing break from the business of life, grab a happy hour drink with friends while watching the sun set, seek sanctuary while on a business trip, or enjoy a scrumptious meal at the Vino Di Notte, one thing is certain-Hotel Indigo offers a quality great time! Feel free to visit the hotel’s website at:

14 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

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Amy Sullivan Manager Sarasota

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Southwest Florida caught flaunting their style. Show us your passion for fashion, you never know you could be next!

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Sara Carney Designer Naples

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Real Estate Agent Punta Gorda FOCUS of SWFL 2011 17

fashion NEWS

i like shirts announces the launch of their online t-shirt store. With the launch of the site, also comes the distribution of their product through a network of retail boutiques and wholesale channels. Catering to girls of all ages, the unique i like design makes wearing this t-shirt fun and interactive. Each t-shirt has the words “i like” big and bold - front and center near the neckline with colorful swirls cascading down to the bottom then pointing to the backside of the t-shirt. The lower back of each t-shirt then has a word to express what the wearer likes. Such as: candy, texting, movies, etc. “To get what you want you gotta tell ‘em what you like.” That’s the premise of the i like t-shirt. It’s a fun way for girls to communicate what they like and get what they want. The i like t-shirts come in a variety of colors made from high quality 100% combed cotton and claims to be, “The softest, most comfortable t-shirt you’ve ever worn.” i like shirts uses texting symbols and abbreviations on some of their designs keeping up with the latest way young adults communicate with each other.

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^BILL CREDIT/PROGRAMMING OFFER: IF BY THE END OF PROMOTIONAL PRICE PERIOD(S) CUSTOMER DOES NOT CONTACT DIRECTV TO CHANGE SERVICE THEN ALL SERVICES WILL AUTOMATICALLY CONTINUE AT THE THEN-PREVAILING RATES. Free SHOWTIME for 3 months, a value of $38.97. Free HBO, Starz, SHOWTIME and Cinemax for 3 months, a value of $135. LIMIT ONE PROGRAMMING OFFER PER ACCOUNT. †FREE HD OFFER: Includes access to HD channels associated with your programming package. To be eligible for Free HD you must activate and maintain the CHOICE XTRA Package or higher and enroll in Auto Bill Pay. Also requires at least one (1) HD Receiver and activation of HD Access. Account must be in “good standing” as determined by DIRECTV in its sole discretion to remain eligible for all offers. In certain markets, programming/pricing may vary. °2-YR. LEASE AGREEMENT: EARLY CANCELLATION WILL RESULT IN A FEE OF $20/MONTH FOR EACH REMAINING MONTH. Must maintain 24 consecutive months of your DIRECTV programming package. DVR Service $7/mo. required for DVR and HD DVR lease. HD Access fee $10/mo. required for HD Receiver and HD DVR. No lease fee for only 1 receiver. Lease fee for first 2 receivers $6/mo.; additional receiver leases $6/mo. each. NON-ACTIVATION CHARGE OF $150 PER RECEIVER MAY APPLY. ALL EQUIPMENT IS LEASED AND MUST BE RETURNED TO DIRECTV UPON CANCELLATION, OR UNRETURNED EQUIPMENT FEES APPLY. VISIT OR CALL 1-800-DIRECTV FOR DETAILS. DVR or HD advanced receiver instant rebate requires activation of the CHOICE package or above. HD DVR upgrade requires activation of CHOICE XTRA package or above. Second advanced receiver offer requires activation of an HD DVR as the first free receiver upgrade and subscription to Whole-Home DVR service ($3/mo.). Additional advanced receiver upgrades available for a charge. INSTALLATION: Standard professional installation only. Custom installation extra. DIRECTV CINEMA: Access to DIRECTV CINEMA programming available at no additional charge is based on package selection. Actual number of TV shows and movies will vary. Some DIRECTV CINEMA content requires an HD DVR (HR20 or later) or DVR (R22 or later), DIRECTV CINEMA Connection Kit ($25) and broadband Internet service with speeds of 750 kbps or higher and a network router with an available Ethernet port are required. DVR Service required for DVR and HD DVR Receivers. HD Access required for HD DVR. Visit for details. *Eligibility for local channels based on service address. Not all networks available in all markets. ^^To access DIRECTV HD programming, an HD Access fee ($10/mo.) and HD television equipment are required. Number of HD channels varies by package selected. Programming, pricing, terms and conditions subject to change at any time. Pricing residential. Taxes not included. Receipt of DIRECTV programming subject to DIRECTV Customer Agreement; copy provided at and in first bill. ©2011 DIRECTV, Inc. DIRECTV and the Cyclone Design logo, CHOICE and CHOICE XTRA are trademarks of DIRECTV, Inc. All other trademarks and service marks are the property of their respective owners.


• Longest running local TV talk show in Southwest Florida (20 years) • Five Time Recipient of the “NAACP Image Award” • Recipient of the Southwest Florida “People’s Choice Award” • Recipient of the “Hodges University Diversity Excellence Award” • Recipient of the “Key to the City of Fort Myers Award” “Lee Pitts is a pioneer, leader and stellar talk show host.” -Fort Myers News-press, February 6, 2006

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ECHO Vintage Books & Vinyl

Providing Downtown Fort Myers With A Great Afternoon Relaxer Open to the public Thursday-Saturday from 11:00am to 5:00pm, ECHO Vintage Books & Vinyl serves as one of Downtown Fort Myers’ greatest treasures. The book and record store, that houses the area’s largest selection of rare, out of print and hard to find books and records, offers the public the enjoyment of relaxation at its finest; nothing quite compares to shuffling through old records searching for that one great hit, or scanning the shelves upon shelves of genuine book collections, pleased to find that there is something for everyone! The shop is serves as retail for books and records primarily, but customers are pleasantly surprised by the large array of specialty gifts that are also available. If vintage gifts and memorabilia, comic books, ephemera, stamps, or retro clothes strike your fancy ECHO Vintage Books & 20 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

Vinyl is your one stop shop. The store is also a great thought for the gift buyer as it is home to collection of vintage birthday and celebratory cards and gift ideas! Take a stroll through the one-of-a-kind shop at 793 Fowler Street, Fort Myers, FL 33901.

By Kayla DaCosta


Getting a bargain is special in good economic times, but in economic times like these, when the economy is teetering, home prices continue to fall and fuel prices inexplicably bounce up to near-record levels a bargain is more special than ever. Despite the rising specter of inflation, there are still plenty of new cars available for less than $18,000. Of course, all of them will accomplish the basic tasks that cars are engineered to accomplish – they go, they stop and they keep you out of the weather. But in the editors’ vast experience with cars costing less than 18 grand, not all of them are cool, and certainly not all of them are fun. But then there are the select few, the cars that not only do everything one wants and needs a car to do, but those that also do it in an engaging and enjoyable manner. “There are great deals to be had on many new cars under $18,000, but only a handful of them really possess that cool, difficult-to-describe ‘it’ factor,” said Jack R. Nerad, executive editorial director and executive market analyst

for Kelley Blue Book’s “Each year the competition keeps getting tougher in this affordable segment, with more personality-filled, amenity-laden, versatile vehicles entering the marketplace. In ranking our top picks this year, the 2012 Fiat 500 took the top prize as our No. 1 choice. After 28 years out of the U.S. market, Fiat is making huge waves with the new 500 and in our books, it is the leader of the ‘Cool Cars’ parade.”

As you might imagine, two criterias, fun-todrive and fun-to-own are critical in the roll-up to what the editors freely admit is a very subjective "cool factor," the over-arching number-one criterion. Each of the cars on the list is available for purchase at $18,000 or less, using Kelley Blue Book’s exclusive Fair Purchase Price as the yardstick (Kelley Blue Book’s Fair Purchase Price is the price consumers typically are paying for a car, based on actual new-vehicle transactions and updated weekly for changing market conditions). Paying less than sticker also is pretty cool, so here, counting down from numbers 10 to one.

Kelly Blue Book 2011 Top Coolest Cars Under $18,000 10: 2011 Hyundai Elantra Who knew good value could be so cool? The all-new 2011 Hyundai Elantra is an all-around package of slick design, convenient features and fuel-efficiency -- every Elantra gets 40 miles per gallon on the highway... 9: 2011 Nissan Cube We agree with Huey Lewis: it is hip to be square, at least when it comes to a car like the Nissan Cube. The polarizing squares-meet-circles design theme gets a lot of attention, but the Cube’s attractiveness is more than skin deep, with features like a sliding and reclining secondrow seat, an overabundance of head room and a headliner design that mimics the concentric circles created by a pebble dropped into a pond...

5. 2011 Kia Forte Koup Having an attractive car that others haven’t seen – that’s cool. The 2011 Kia Forte Koup isn’t just the sportiestlooking car on our list, its standard-equipment list includes a satellite-ready audio system, Bluetooth handsfree phone connectivity and USB/iPod integration, so it looks cool and acts cool… 4. 2011 Honda Fit Fun, flexible and funky, the Honda Fit remains an instantly unanimous choice for our annual cool cars list. Even the crisper, better-equipped Fit Sport comes in under our $18,000 ceiling...

8. 2011 Volkswagen Jetta Germany! It’s a country practically brimming with freaky coolness, exemplified by Rammstein, Kraftwerk and, of course, Volkswagen. The latest rendition of VW’s Jetta captures much of Germany’s quirky-cool spirit while being expressly engineered for an American appetite...

3. 2011 Ford Fiesta It’s on our list for the second year in a row and we have a feeling the Ford Fiesta is going to be another perennial favorite. Its European looks and well-crafted interior outclass everything else in the category, and its sharp driving dynamics and nimble handling still impress us every time we get behind the wheel...

7. 2012 Ford Focus European automakers have long subscribed to the idea that a well-packaged car doesn’t need to be large in size. Ripping a page out of that playbook, Ford has brought the compact, Euro-sweetened 2012 Focus to America, offering head-turning looks, sporty handling and a healthy standard equipment list in an efficient and affordable package...

2. 2011 Mazda3 At some point we’re going to have to give the Mazda3 a lifetime achievement award for its unequaled streak of appearances on our annual list of coolest cars. For the 8th year in a row – every year of the cars existence, in fact – the Mazda3 has earned a spot on our list for its standout sheet metal, excellent interior and exceptional driving dynamics...

6. 2012 Honda Civic Cool doesn’t always have to be in your face. Take the 2012 Honda Civic, for example. Its attributes read like a thought-out online dating profile: Good looking but not flashy, low maintenance and easygoing…but happy be your partner in crime for any adventure (insert winky face here)...

1. 2012 Fiat 500 Regardless of what the Hello Kitty mafia would like to believe, cute isn’t cool. Not usually, anyway. But that’s because cute is rarely backed up by substance, as it is in the 2012 Fiat 500...

FOCUS of SWFL 2011 21

Fish is both a delicious and nutritious meal option, but one from which home chefs often shy away. In a new series of CanolaInfo recipes and videos, Carla Hall, finalist on "Top Chef," Seasons 5 and 8, answers common questions about fish, including how to properly select and prepare it. "Cooking fish is easy once you know a few tricks," says Hall, who was voted "Top Chef" Season 8 All-Stars Fan Favorite. "A lot of people have fish fears, which is unfortunate because it's a healthy addition to any diet and ticky-boo to prepare." Hall is committed to wellness, balance and taste, which is why she cooks with fresh and healthy ingredients. As a common ingredient in these recipes, canola oil delivers on health and function. It has the least saturated fat and most omega-3 fat of all cooking oils with a high heat tolerance (468 째F smoke point). Its neutral taste and light texture allow the natural flavors of fish and other ingredients to shine. "Getting the right ingredients is part of the recipe to success," says Hall. "For example, when selecting fish, make sure it has sheen, not slime, and is intact with the flesh springing back upon touch." If fish requires deboning, Hall advises using tweezers. If fish requires marinating or thawing, she says do so in the refrigerator. Cooked fish should be opaque, not translucent, and flaking generally indicates that the fish is overcooked. "Don't be afraid to get your hands dirty in the kitchen because remember, it's all about the love,"

22 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

Go Fish

Canola Oil Recipes

Broiled Trout with Lemon Oil & Oven-Grilled Vegetables The star of this recipe is delicious lemon canola oil, which should be a staple in any pantry. It may be used on fish, in salad dressings, on roasted vegetables and just about anywhere you would use canola oil. Here, it makes this simply prepared broiled trout with vegetables a healthy and tasty weekday meal.

Ingredients: Lemon Oil

1 cup canola oil 250 mL zest of two lemons, about 2 Tbsp (30 mL) 2 small zucchini, cut in half lengthwise, then cut into 1/4-inch (0.5-mm) thick diagonal pieces 1 pint grape tomatoes 1 medium red onion, cut in half and thinly sliced into half moons 4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed 2 sprigs rosemary 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar 15 mL 2 Tbsp lemon oil 30 mL 1/2 tsp salt 2 mL 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper 2 mL 4 rainbow trout fillets (6 oz/170 g each), skin removed 2 tsp lemon oil 10 mL 4 sprigs fresh rosemary, 2 inches (5 cm) long 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper 2 mL lemon wedges for garnishing

Visit for more recipes

Nutritional Analysis per Serving: Calories Total Fat Saturated Fat Cholesterol Sodium Carbohydrates Fiber Protein

310 18 g 3.5 g 75 mg 55 mg 7g 2g 28 g

Instructions: 1.In blender, combine canola oil and lemon zest. Process until smooth, then strain through fine mesh strainer. Store in refrigerator in airtight container or covered jar for 1-2 days. 2.Preheat broiler. In large bowl, combine zucchini, grape tomatoes, red onion, garlic and rosemary. Drizzle vegetable mixture with balsamic vinegar and lemon oil. Toss, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Spread vegetables in single layer on baking sheet and place 4 inches under broiler for 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender crisp and browned. Halfway through cooking time, toss vegetables. 3.While vegetables are cooking, prepare baking sheet with foil and canola oil cooking spray. Place trout on prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle both sides with pepper and place rosemary sprig under each fillet. Drizzle each fillet with 1/2 tsp (2 mL) lemon oil. Place fish under broiler for 7-8 minutes or until fish is opaque and flaky. 4.Carefully lift trout from pan with spatula and serve with vegetables. Yield: 4 servings. Serving size: 1 fillet.

continued... FOCUS of SWFL 2011 23

Go Fish

Grilled Salmon Over Lentil Salad with Walnut Vinaigrette


This healthy, delicious meal is easy to make and easy to enjoy. Eat it for lunch, dinner or even a picnic. Canola oil in the marinade and vinaigrette allows the zingy taste of the Dijon mustard and fresh herbs to come through. Canola oil also provides heartsmart omega-3 fat along with the salmon and walnuts.

Nutritional Analysis per Serving: Calories Total Fat Saturated Fat Cholesterol Sodium Carbohydrates Fiber Protein

Ingredients: 4 salmon fillets (4 oz/125 g portions), skin removed


2 Tbsp Dijon mustard 30 mL 2 Tbsp canola oil 30 mL 2 sprigs fresh tarragon, pulled and roughly chopped 1 clove garlic, minced

Lentil Salad

1 cup dry brown or green lentils, rinsed 250 mL 1 bay leaf 2 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed 1 rosemary sprig 1 medium carrot, finely diced 1 celery stalk, finely diced 1/4 cup red onion, very finely diced 60 mL 1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped 60 mL 1 Tbsp chopped tarragon 15 mL

Walnut Vinaigrette

2 Tbsp red onion, minced 30 mL 2 cloves garlic 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard 30 mL 1/4 cup rice or champagne vinegar 60 mL 1/2 cup canola oil 125 mL 1/2 cup walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped 125 mL 1/4 tsp pepper 1 mL

420 17 g 1g 60 mg 230 mg 33 g 8g 34 g

Instructions: 1.In medium bowl, combine mustard, canola oil, tarragon and garlic for marinade. Place salmon in marinade and gently toss until thoroughly coated. Place fish in resealable bag in refrigerator for at least 1 hour. 2.Heat grill to 375 °F (190 °C), when it’s too hot to hold hand above coals for more than 5 seconds. 3.In 5-quart pot, bring 3 cups (750 mL) of water to a boil. Add lentils, garlic cloves and rosemary sprig. Cook lentils until just tender, about 30 minutes. Strain in colander. 4.In plastic bowl or cup with fitted lid, combine red onion, garlic, mustard, vinegar, canola oil, walnuts and pepper. Shake until thoroughly mixed and emulsified. Season with pepper. 5.In large bowl, toss lentils, carrots, celery and red onions together. Stir in enough vinaigrette, about 1/4 cup (60 mL), to coat lentil mixture and store rest in refrigerator for up to one week. Toss in fresh parsley and tarragon. 6.Spray grill rack lightly and cautiously with canola oil cooking spray, then carefully place salmon fillets on hot grill 2 inches (5 cm) apart. Cook on each side 3-4 minutes at diagonal angle to grill rack for professional-looking grill marks. Remove salmon from grill and serve over lentil salad. Garnish with lemon wedges, if desired. Yield: 4 servings. Serving size: 1 fillet.

lemon wedges for garnish

Tips: The marinade doesn’t have a lot of acid, so it’s perfect for marinating the salmon for up to 10 hours before grill-

ing (or broiling). Consider placing the salmon and marinade in a resealable bag before work and cooking it when you get home. As another time-saver, the components of the lentil salad may be made up to a day ahead and tossed in the vinaigrette at the last minute or 2 hours before serving. As a quicker alternative, use 1 1/2 cups (375 mL) canned, rinsed lentils or black or small red beans instead. 24 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

Tuna Stir-fry Over Whole-Wheat Vermicelli Using cubed tuna in a stir-fry is unusual in a fantastic way. Combined with fresh veggies, edamame and whole-wheat pasta, this dish is teeming with nutrients and fiber. Because small batches are made at a time, stir-fries are a great way to cook for one, four or eight.

Ingredients: 12 oz tuna steak, cut into 1/2-inch (1-cm) cubes 350 g 2 tsp canola oil 10 mL canola oil cooking spray 1 garlic clove, smashed 2 pieces ginger, cut into 1/4-inch (0.5-mm) rounds 1 large carrot, peeled, halved lengthwise and cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) diagonal pieces 8-12 spears asparagus, ends trimmed and cut into 2-inch (5-cm) pieces 8 oz shiitake mushrooms, stems discarded and tops cut into 1/4-inch (5-mm) strips 250 g 1 cup frozen edamame beans, thawed 250 mL

Stir-Fry Sauce

1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce 60 mL 1 Tbsp ginger, grated 15 mL 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 Tbsp cornstarch 15 mL 1 Tbsp water 15 mL 1 lb whole wheat vermicelli, cooked according to box instructions 500 g

Nutritional Analysis per Serving:

Visit for more recipes Instructions:

Calories Total Fat Saturated Fat Cholesterol Sodium Carbohydrates Fiber Protein

440 6g 0g 35 mg 310 mg 65 g 9g 32 g

1.In medium bowl, toss tuna with canola oil (this ensures perfectly seared tuna). Set aside. 2.Heat wok or large, heavy skillet to medium-high to high heat. Spray canola oil cooking spray to coat pan; add smashed garlic and ginger pieces to flavor oil. After 20 seconds, add carrots. Cook for 2-3 minutes, then add asparagus. Spray more canola oil if necessary to keep vegetables from sticking. Cook for additional 2 minutes or until asparagus is bright green and carrots are tender. Remove vegetables from pan and set aside on flat plate. 3.Spray pan with canola oil cooking spray or oil. Add mushroom pieces. Cook for 2-3 minutes until browned. Remove from pan and set aside with other vegetables. 4.Reheat pan to medium-high to high heat. Add tuna in two batches without crowding pan. Gently move tuna around with spatula. Sear tuna until just cooked. Remove first batch from pan and set aside. Repeat with second batch, leaving in wok or skillet. 5.Return carrots, asparagus and mushroom to wok or skillet. Add edamame and first batch of tuna. Make a well in center of stir-fry ingredients and pour sauce in middle. Coat vegetables with sauce and quickly bring to a boil. Serve tuna-vegetable mix over hot vermicelli. Yield: 6 servings. Serving size: 1 cup (250 mL).

Tips: For stir-fries, most of the effort is put into preparing vegetables and having them ready once it’s time to cook. It’s important to cut vegetables the same size so they cook evenly. Feel free to use the vegetables you have available. FOCUS of SWFL 2011 25

All about the Details M

asterpiece Custom Homes, Inc. is a family business head-quartered in North Port, Florida. They offer finely detailed home building and renovation with a design-build approach. The high quality finishes and amenities standard in a Masterpiece home are tailored to satisfy the particular desires of each of their clients. Building a truly custom home is only attainable by way of a team whose goal is to listen to the customer and make themselves available throughout the course of the project. The one-on-one attention Masterpiece Custom Homes gives each client encourages accuracy, excellence, and an all around enjoyable experience. Though Nick Bonsky is an Ohio native, his love for the area blossomed after a vacation to Charlotte Harbor. Later, he worked in construction on Gasparilla Island and eventually settled in the North Port area in the late 80’s. Anne Parks Bonsky's pursuit of home design sprouted first from her childhood talents in art and math. Her eventual passion was sharpened by her interior design studies at Sarasota's Ringling School of Art and Design. Masterpiece Custom Homes is a collaborative effort in which upscale amenities are added to moderate homes, a combination that has Masterpiece winning prestigious home awards year after year. Since finding one another, their passion and pride for their work has only intensified. Their dedication to detail has made Masterpiece Custom Homes a multiple award-winning homebuilder. Because their designs incorporate a wide range of unique touches and are built with precision, Masterpiece swept the Best Overall award from the Home Builders Association of Sarasota & Manatee Counties Parade of Homes competition year after year after year. 26 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

Masterpiece Custom Homes also makes renovating existing homes an exciting, enjoyable process. Whether you're looking to update the style and functionality of your entire home, need to add on a room for a growing family, or just want to make your house a home you love, a home renovation by Masterpiece Custom Homes will set your house apart from the rest and make it truly yours. Personal attention from our experienced in-house design and contracting team means your vision and your voice will not be lost during the remodeling process. Masterpiece will be there with you every step of the way, dedicating themselves to crafting your existing home into one rich with elegant style, modern, high quality finishes, and all the architectural details that come standard with every Masterpiece. Masterpiece Custom Homes is a proud member of the Florida Green Building Coalition, and they recognize the need for and benefits of building more sustainable living environments. Green building is a fastgrowing trend for both new homes and home renovations, and as a builder with the ultimate goal of satisfying clients, they keep up with the most recent advances of the movement. If you're hoping to reduce your home's energy consumption and water usage by building green, you can trust the Masterpiece team to aid you in your quest. For fine architectural details, superior craftsmanship, and a contractor that offers personal attention to every client, consider Masterpiece Custom Homes, Inc., the Sarasota and Charlotte area's best choice. Nick and Anne invite you to visit their model home located at 4535 W. Price Blvd. in North Port. Their website ( allows to view their gallery, including before and after home renovations.

FOCUS of SWFL 2011 27


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We also offer 95% No PMI Conv., FHA, VA Jumbo and many other lending programs

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Email: Website: FOCUS of SWFL 2011 29

R eal Wome n,

Rea l S w i m S t y l e s

By Samantha Ramos


ere’s a new trend in swimwear this season – swim styles for REAL women are in. In fact, a recent survey by Lands’ End found that the majority of the female respondents prefer swim styles designed with real women in mind such as Slenderizers (82 percent), One-piece styles (81 percent), and SwimMinis™ (70 percent). Wearable swim trends are tops and it’s not surprising considering almost all female respondents (99 percent) identify themselves as REAL women with curves as opposed to the less than one percent who state they look like a supermodel. “This season, real women rule and they are determining the trends seen at the beach and poolside,” said Ivy Spargo, general merchandise manager, Lands’ End. “At Lands’ End, we’ve found that women want coverage combined with flattering fits and fashion-forward details and they will find them in this season’s swim styles.”

Styles to Flatter Real Women Top the Trends

From ruching and ruffles to swim skirts and patterned swimsuits, according to Spargo, all women will be able to wear this season’s hottest trends. Ruching or shirring may be reminiscent of the Greek Goddess era but this figure-flattering style detail will turn many into a Beach Goddess when it comes to swimwear. Gathered fabric is sewn together and perfectly drapes to conceal and compliment almost all body types. Another wearable swim design detail this season is ruffles. Lands’ End has added this of-the-moment detail to swim skirts and swim tunics for a feminine touch. For those looking for coverage and style, look no further than the swim skirt. More than seven out of ten (72 percent) of those surveyed are considering a swim skirt this season.

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While solid colors will remain a style staple in swimwear, patterns are picking up. In fact, the survey found 81 percent of women are considering a patterned swimsuit. Popular prints this season include retro polka dots, nautical stripes, graphic florals and paisley prints.

Slenderizing Swimsuits Go Mainstream

No longer a secretive undergarment, swimsuit slenderizers have now gone mainstream. As a result, the survey found more than eight out ten women (81 percent) are considering a Slenderizing swimsuit this season as new innovations emerge. Lands’ End offers a variety of figure-flattering swimwear with targeted slenderizing properties in three different collections: ShapeWear, All-over Control and Tummy Control. While women may want control in a swimsuit, many want targeted control in areas like the abs, obliques and back. Lands’ End’s ShapeWear Collection features an exclusive slimming technology for targeted control. Overwhelmingly, 95 percent of women want a dream swimsuit to help flatten the tummy area. That dream can become a reality with the Lands’ End Tummy Control Swimwear Collection featuring one-pieces and swim separates for those seeking some midsection support. For many surveyed (93 percent), the dreamiest swimsuit offers all-over slimming. Lands’ End’s All-over Control Collection offers technology and fabric that deliver slimming power that fits snugly, yet feels comfortable in and out of the water.

Quality in a Swimsuit Never Goes Out of Style

Quality in a swimsuit is always in fashion and according to the survey, the majority of women (94 percent) are willing to pay more for good quality swimwear. More than a third of respondents (38 percent) started shopping for quality swimwear in their 20s while 43 percent discovered superior suits in their 30s and 5 percent in their 40s. When looking for swimsuit quality characteristics, almost all reported searching out good design and high-quality fabrics (98 percent), good bra support (97 percent), well-sewn seams (94 percent) and non-plastic hardware (84 percent).

Survey Findings • UnReal Swimsuits – The real women surveyed believed that some swimsuit designs can be unreal including those with “barely there” bottoms and flimsy fabrics (93 percent) and no support tops and lack of coverage (92 percent).

• Fit Favorite – When asked what swimsuit characteristic

was most important, more than half of survey respondents chose fit (67 percent).

• Beach Chair Bound – Due to lack of swimsuit confi-

dence, women surveyed stated they’ve refused to wear a swimsuit in public (76 percent), missed out on a fun water activity (74 percent) and didn’t get off their beach chair or towel (68 percent).

• One-Piece Punch – When asked which swimsuit style

women will consider this season, the majority overwhelming chose the one-piece (81 percent) over a bikini (18 percent).

• Bring on the Bandeau – Over a third of survey respondents (37 percent) are considering a bandeau swim top style.

• Old Hollywood Glamour – It’s evident that women want

to look glamorous on the beach as more than two-thirds (67 percent) stated they will look for swimsuits with Old Hollywood style.

• Coverage and Cut Above – More than nine out of ten women agree that the cut and coverage of swimsuit are what attracts them to swim styles.

• Swim Confidence Boost – 84 percent of women stated

they would have more confidence in a swimsuit if someone simply offered a nice compliment.

• Care is Key – Eight out of ten survey respondents stated they know how to properly care for their swimsuit.

• Real Women – Six out of ten (60 percent) embrace how they look as a real woman.

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Aqua Terra X-back Tankini Top $54.50 Aqua terra Boy Short $34.50

All Over Control Grecian Swimdress $109.00

TOMMY BAHAMA Underwire full-coverage foam-cup halter, 32-38c-d, palm print. High-waist bottoms, palm print, xs-xl. Halter tankini, soft cups, tummy control, palm print, xs-xl. Solid high-waist bottoms, black, xs-xl. All, nylon/spandex. Halter top, $82. Print bottoms, $46. Tankini, $76. Solid bottoms, $34. All, imported. In Women’s Active at Nordstrom and online at

MARC BY MARC JACOBS Oversized resin sunglasses, ivory gold, imported, $85. In Fashion Accessories at Nordstrom and online at Tie-front bandeau, removable soft cups. Hipster bottoms, covered buttons. Both, nylon/spandex, lobster red/pristine crème stripe, USA, p-xl. Bandeau, $85. Hipster, $85. In Women’s Active at Nordstrom and online at FOCUS of SWFL 2011 35

2Bamboo Top $52 Bottom $39 Available at select macy's and at

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Coco Reed $118 Available at select macy's and at

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Photo by Jeff Fusco

Lucy Tight & Wayne Waxing are HYMN FOR HER, a rockin' duo that hails from anywhere they can park 16 foot, 1961 vintage Bambi Airstream (comes with dog and baby) as they tour the U.S. coast to coast. Both players are multi-instrumentalists and one tight unit. They describe their music as "stomp-grass punk folk with a hint of Americana." Lucy plays a three-stringed broom handle/cigar box guitar, banjo and sometimes even a glockenspiel as she shares vocal duties with Wayne, who also plays acoustic guitar, banjo, dobro, and/or harmonica all while handling percussion on bass drum and hi-hat! Bullet microphones and an arsenal of effect pedals give this band a sound like no other. The show is enhanced by a slide show of original photos projected on an old-fashioned slide projector. Where ever they play, this band wins over the audience with their amazing live show that sometimes might include a Led Zeppelin or other classic tune given the Hymn For Her twist!


ymn For Her's latest release, LUCY & WAYNE and THE AMAIRICAN STREAM, was recorded in the Airstream and mixed by Jim Diamond (White Stripes). The CD and the duo have been receiving rave reviews in the press, including Los Angeles Times, Pittsburgh Tribune, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Lexington Herald-Leader, Asheville Citizen Times, The Albuquerque Journal and more! The Orlando Weekly says, "Their amalgam of folk, blues and bluegrass ain't no easygoing sweet-tea affair. It's an intensely haunting, alternative vision that sometimes strikes cutting moods." Having played hundreds of shows in the last six months, the duo has no plans of ending their musical odyssey any time in the near future. They'll keep the road hot through the end of 2011, while they continue to write new tunes that they hope to record at the end of the year. Stay tuned for details, and catch Hymn For Her in a city near you. By Michelle Roche

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FOCUS of of SWFL SWFL 2011 2011 43 43 FOCUS

Food, Fun and Changes in


By Moony Mann

Marc and Britta Schulze have certainly made a change in latitude... Relocating to SWFL from Germany the couple admits the weather isn't the only reason they find this area so agreeable. The two are avid boaters and enjoy fishing and many other activities our area regularly affords. The lifestyle they now enjoy allows them to pursue many passions including owning and operating the newest dining and dancing hot spot in Naples. They have created a winning combination at Latitude Naples and I'd like to share with you some information about the new Naples offering that endeavors to aim higher than guest’s expectations. Latitude Naples has a

fantastic! I perform in many restaurants in the area and find myself dining at many of them often. The cheeseburger might be the best I have ever eaten... truly scrumptious. The Chicken Caesar Salad Flatbread is delicious and the portions are generous. If you are looking for a steak and a glass of wine, let me recommend the Fillet with mashed potatoes and you'll be pleasantly surprised with the wine menu weather you are a casual wine drinker or a die-hard connoisseur. If Vodka, up, with a couple of blue cheese olives is your thing, it’ll come across the bar perfect every time and is my recommended drink at the bar. The Happy Hour is 4pm-7pm and is very popular so get there early if you want a seat at the bar. But not to fear, large comfortable booths and high-top tables await larger groups and latecomers. You will notice the prices are considerably lower than lesser places and the atmosphere is always Happy. Be sure to tell 'em Moony sent ya...


f it's nightlife you are looking for then you'll be interested to know that some of the best live local music acts perform at the venue which can comfortably accommodate three hundred patrons. The lounge is where most people dance but I have seen the occasional couple dancing in the dining room. "We like to have fun and meet people who enjoy their time with us" says Mr. Schulze. Regular music acts include The High Voltage Band, Cahlua and Cream and the Moony Mann Band.

Latitude Naples

large comfortable dining room with a contemporary elegance, an upscale lounge featuring a wide range of beers, spirits and wines, one of the most talented kitchens in the area headed by Chef Ross Peterson, and live music throughout the week including one of the best line-ups of local entertainment. "The philosophy behind the Fusion Cuisine menu is simple... we want to cater to everyone. We are becoming popular with locals and tourists alike because we offer a wide range of culinary delights." says owner Marc Schulze. "We use the freshest local and global ingredients that reflect in our cooking style and multicultural fusion menu." adds Chef Ross. I can tell you first hand that the food is 44 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

2500 Vanderbilt Beach Road Suite 1100 Naples, FL 34109 (239) 596-5600 GPS: 26° 14.600N and 81° 45.900W

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Photo by Gary Jung

... Is Worth a Thousand Words

By Paul Prather

A happy life is about new adventures and the friends you make along the way, says Photojournalist Debi Pittman Wilkey, who travels South Florida coast-to-coast, exploring and capturing the spirit of communities and people “living in Paradise.”


ebi’s career as an Emmy-winning Television Producer, award-winning community Newspaper Editor, Magazine Editor, celebrity features Writer, Reporter and syndicated Entertainment and Talk Show Producer has taken her from St. Louis, to Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco and New York City. After “discovering” Naples and buying a new home, Debi, who remembers saving up to buy her first camera, a Kodak Brownie at age ten, jumped at the opportunity to fulfill her lifelong passion and launch her own business. Always on the prowl for new outlets to showcase her work, the photojournalist contributes to National Geographic Global Media, southwest Florida’s ‘Must Do’ travel magazines, Fort Myers News-Press, Coastal Living, Gulfshore Life, Naples on the Gulf and The Naples Times.

Lovers Gala’ for Naples Humane Society, ‘Day of Dance’, and for the Naples Art Association at The von Liebig Art Center. Recently, Debi was on-hand covering a trunk show by Petit Pois International Fashion Designer, Viviana Gabeiras along with her husband Rafael Gabeiras Rey, at Petunia’s on Fifth, hosted by owner Claudette Evans. Miss Florida International donned the mesh gowns, posing for photographs in an impromptu fashion show on the sidewalks along Fifth Avenue, “such a fun event to photograph, with a wonderful community of friends,” says Debi. Debi’s photograph “Barefoot Boy” was selected for the Camera USA exhibit by Harry Benson, known worldwide for photographing the Beatles, Liz Taylor, Michael Jackson and 11 US Presidents, and his Vanity Fair and Life magazine covers, on display until Aug. 26 at The von Liebig Art Center.

Originally published in the summer issue of Gannett Magazine Group/Siesta Publication’s, ‘Must Do’ travel magazines, the photo was taken on the historic Naples Barefoot Boy on the historic Naples Fishing Pier by Debi Pittman Wilkey Family is important to Debi Fishing Pier during a shoot and says she, along with Ken Wilkey, Senior Vice with actress and model Mareesa DeAngelis, Naples, President at Telemundo, “couldn’t be prouder” of and ‘Late Show with David Letterman’ crew memtheir daughter, Kaylin, a University of Delaware ber, John Moran, New York City. graduate set to begin classes at the Miami School of Law, “she’s the greatest achievement in both of Debi started “snapping away” because “it was like our lives, and always will be.” the teen stepped out of a Norman Rockwell illustration, walking by with such a huge grin on his face, Community is also important to Debi, who freloaded with all his fishing gear, obviously ready for quently teams up with Gary Jung, volunteering to a fun afternoon along our beautiful Gulf.” “snap photos” at fundraising events, including, ‘Arabian Nights Bachelor Auction’ for Cancer AlliContact Debi at ance of Naples, ‘Fashion Obsession’ for the AmeriAdditional photos at can Heart Association’s Go Red campaign, ‘Pet FOCUS of SWFL 2011 47

Stuart Dunkin

The Diamond Man & World Renowned Backgammon Player By Samantha Scott

In the jewelry business for over 50 years, Stuart Dunkin is the heart and face of Dunkin’s Diamonds. Often referred to as “The Diamond Man,” what started as a hobby for Stuart developed into a passion… and the continuation of a threegeneration business. However, something few people know, Stuart was at one time considered one of the world’s best amateur Backgammon players, a game he learned in his twenties while living in Miami!


he family trade started in Europe with his great-grandfather. Years later, the next generation including Stuart’s father, left Europe for the United States where he started his own jewelry business. Stuart’s involvement in the business started early – at the age of six – doing small chores in the back of the store. Later on, after considering a career as a doctor or lawyer, Stuart decided to open his own jewelry store. His reason? Doctors and lawyers do good things, but “in jewelry, you deal with romance, birthdays and anniversaries…fun times. Where else can you do that?” The lessons and values honesty and hard work that Stuart’s parents taught he and his siblings weren’t lost. As he continued the family tradition, he built the business, Dunkin’s Diamonds on them. Dunkin’s Diamonds has now been serving Southwest Florida for

48 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

nearly 20 years and still relies on the basic principles started three generations ago; fine quality jewelry, excellent workmanship, best value and personalized service. Since diamonds have fascinated people for centuries, Stuart and his staff strive to keep that charm in every piece of jewelry in the stores. Each piece is unique and in fact, Stuart ensures this by purchasing the diamonds while still in “the rough” or uncut. With three generations of established relationships and the ability to purchase all around the world, it’s guaranteed that each piece sold at Dunkin’s Diamonds has a special flare. Coupled with his personal, powerful jewelry connections across the globe, he ensures the company stays on top of new fashion trends in diamond jewelry, cutting edge designers and traditional styles. Dunkin’s Diamonds also has a design department and factory to exclusively provide customers with just about anything their heart desires. Simply put, being the best is something Stuart continuously strives for, not only in gaming, but in business as well. His drive and determination to be the best and offer the best possible jewelry and products for his customers is what makes Dunkin’s Diamonds great. It started many generations ago and will continue on.

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Photography by Nancy Nassiff

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Designing from the ground up

By Scott Black

Nine months after relocating from New York City to Sarasota in October, 2010, interior designer Richard C. Carpenter is well on his way to becoming the hardest working 'reverse snowbird' in town. "I'm so very fortunate to have great clients and active projects in both cities now," says Carpenter, who returns to New York at least once a month to meet with clients there, assess projects in-progress and to visit designer showrooms. "I'm always shopping, for all of my clients, wherever I am," adds Carpenter, with his easy, open smile, "but to be living now full time in Sarasota is my own dream come true." It's a dream that Carpenter has persisted in achieving. When we spoke recently, Carpenter was working with clients who recently engaged him on two new residential projects in Southwest FL, one a 2,600 sq ft beachfront condominium on exclusive Boca Grande, the other a luxurious new 6,000 sq ft home in The Founder's Club. Additionally Carpenter is working on the Boy and Girls Clubs Designer Show house; the Gala opening is on Jan 21, 2012 and runs through the month. After living and working in New York City for 34 years, ultimately running his own business and teaching interior design at The Fashion Institute of Technology, Carpenter carefully planned for his big move to Sarasota for more than a year. He was attracted to Sarasota not only by its rich cultural diversity and pleasant living environment, but also in part due to "a unique opportunity that Robb & Stucky afforded me to become a consulting designer in their Sarasota store." He adds, "Robb & Stucky and I agreed together that my 34 years of designing luxurious homes for a world-class clientele would directly benefit their customers in Sarasota. And we both knew that by meeting customers, I had a built-in opportunity to further develop my own local private design clientele." But only four months after he started, Robb & Stucky was bankrupt and out-of-business and Carpenter was out on his own.


arpenter's limited time at Robb & Stucky was productive and fruitful however. "Robb & Stucky tapped me to design and furnish a spectacular modern house on Casey Key for the March 4th 2011 Sarasota Orchestra Association "Masterworks Showcase Tour of Luxury Homes." "It was an oversold success and the response from visitors, realtors and the press alike to my work was universally positive." (Carpenter's Casey Key "Great Room" was The Observer of Longboat Key's featured photo and front page lead-in to their article about the event.) Carpenter describes his interiors as "sophisticated, even elegant, but always personal, expressly design

for the real individuals who live in them." He adds, "Most of my clients already have their own sense of style and good taste. What I do best, in working with them, is to broaden their horizons. By introducing clients to carefully selected new objects, colors, thoughts and/or ideas, i pull together their own desires in a form that's both new and refreshing but also comfortably reassuring." "I expected my transition from NYC to Sarasota to present some challenges," Carpenter insists, "but I never anticipated the total loss of my new design home base within a matter of months!" Fortunately he minimized the impact of Robb & Stucky's demise through his own vast network of design resources and showroom relationships in New York and elsewhere, developed over many years in business. "And thanks to new clients and new friends I've made here," Carpenter reiterates, "I'm loving living and working in Sarasota!" As part of developing his professional profile in the Sarasota, Carpenter networked with more than 100 local realtors, encouraging them to introduce him to new home buyers. "I believe that I offer prospective Sarasota clients a unique opportunity to tap into a world-class designer to help them create a beautiful home right here in Sarasota." In my presentation recently to the Gay Real Estate Executive Network I emphasized my experience satisfying the design needs of very wealthy clients, many of whom have extensive, museum-quality art collections. In meetings so far with similarly wealthy individuals here in Sarasota, I've realized that my extensive portfolio of work all over the country, from Palm Beach to the Hamptons, New York City to Vail and Houston and beyond, affords new clients great reassurance as they set about to design and furnish their own new homes with me." Carpenter is affiliated with both the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID Florida West Coast Chapter) and the NCIDQ (National Council of Interior Design Qualification). He's also an affiliate member of SAR (Sarasota Association of Realtors), the Sarasota Architects Foundation (SAR), a contributor at The Ringling Museum and a member of the Art Center of Sarasota in addition to the aforementioned GREEN. "To me, Sarasota is a community blessed with many riches both natural and man-made and I look forward to my ever-increasing participation in its many cultural offerings and institutions. 'Giving back' is essential part of my plan," Carpenter concludes, "something that I believe is just as important as being an active participant." Contact info: phone: 917.318.4169

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Jean Alesi

Forging Ahead

By Lina Lasalle

Being Italy's oldest pen manufacturer and earning the title "Best of the Best" in both form and function. Montegrappa has exceptional characteristic designs shown around the world. They have created a way a written word truly speaks. With high-quality instruments giving tribute to such icons as Bruce Lee, Muhammad Ali and Naomi Campbell. Events have forged an unexpected but welcomed link between Montegrappa and one of the greatest names in the history of Grand Prix Racing. Formula One driver Jean Alesi, Montegrappa board member and brand ambassador, is now also an official ambassador for Lotus Cars. Jean will provide his expertise in the development of Lotus’ F1inspired Type 125 track-day car and the accompanying Exos programme. Jean joined Lotus Cars at the Autosport International Show at the NEC, to celebrate the unveiling of many of Lotus Cars’s racing disciplines including the preview of the new 2011 Lotus Renault GP F1 car livery. He admits that, “I’m delighted to be partnering with Lotus. I have a lot of affection for this great British brand, and I’m confident that they will achieve great things in the future both on and off the racetrack. I’m particularly passionate about anything that brings people closer to the racing action, and the Type 125 does exactly that. It’s the ultimate race experience.” Lotus’ Type 125 track-day car is a completely new design, an exclusive, ultrahigh-performance F1-like race car complete with a Cosworth 3.8-liter GP V8 engine producing 640bhp and linked to a six-speed semi-automatic Ricardo gearbox with paddle shift. It was conceived to provide customers with as close to a F1 experience as possible without the extreme technical complications of a true F1 car.

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But unlike an F1 car, an army of technicians and mechanics is not required to start the engine and keep the car running: the start button is all a driver needs to get going. Its chassis is a full carbon design compliant with the latest F1 safety regs, but it is stretched to allow for larger drivers. 25 chassis are being produced, and purchasers of the Lotus Type 125 will be able to choose from a range of liveries including the Exos concept design, or as an option, their own, bespoke livery. Price of each completed vehicle is $1M, plus works and taxes; the price includes the first year’s membership of Exos club, an exclusive private members club only for Type 125 owners. The club will run five events this year, mainly centered around the redeveloped Hethel track. The dates align with certain F1 races, to allow customers to run their cars on Saturday and go to the race on Sunday.


otus will supply the technical team to run the car at Exos events, included within the price. Customers own their cars; they can store them at Lotus during 2011 or have them at their home, race team or other suitable arrangement. Owners can also use the cars between Exos events. With Alesi’s competition pedigree, at the highest levels in motorsport, Lotus believes that he is the perfect partner for the Type 125. Jean enjoyed a successful and eventful F1 career, competing in 202 Grands Prix and collecting a total of 241 points driving for Ferrari, Tyrell, Benetton, Sauber, Prost and Jordan. He collected his one and only F1 win driving for Ferrari in the 1995 Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal. Jean Alesi is still regarded as one of the most popular drivers in the F1 paddock.

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� It's a great feeling to know that our customers care as much about our cuisine as we do." 54 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

Torch Bistro

Satisfying the palette By Anthony William

Recognized as a forward-thinking restaurant that is "right for the times", Torch Bistro has always offered guests something new to discover. Torch Bistro a sophisticated, comfortable environment with stellar service for the discerning guest provides its patrons with a fresh dining experience, enabling them to celebrate living well. Both Shane and Heidi Federici run the daily operations at Torch Bistro’s. Well renowned chef Shane Federici started at the age of 15. His Great grandfather Michael Carlson was a French pastry chef. His other great grandfather Domenick Federici was a chef at Gallaphers Steak House. Shane says they passed down their talents & dedication to him. Working from the ground up within the culinary industry Shane continued working and gaining experience through the years and is a proud graduate from the Culinary Institute of America. His deep commitment as a businessman and chef has worked well for him as he helped others establish successful restaurants of their own. During the development and planning, Heidi and Shane wanted to create a unique lifestyle restaurant that provided a stellar environment. Taking four years to build, they traveled to several areas in the US contacting several architects for design and dining atmosphere, in order to bring more than just a place to eat but a place to dine. They knew they had something distinctive by developing a menu inspired by flavorful delights that are inspired by the seasons. The fresh appeal of Torch is its ability to offer an uptown fine dining at downtown prices, Torch is a highly-acclaimed steak and licensed Rumtini Bar & Restaurant, recognized as having a progressive concept with proven consumer appeal.


nown for its seasonally inspired menu and fresh approach to dining concept has capitalized on meeting the demands of today's culinary-savvy diners. Torch changes the menu six times a year with weekly fresh features to truly capture the flavors of Southwest Florida. Each valued patron can be guaranteed the high-

est quality prepared without compromising great taste or a rich and complete dining experience. The menu is orchestrated by not just one but three Chefs, this is a unique approach compared to line cooks in other restaurants. Being consistently praised for its diverse selection soups chef Michael Polk is well known for his delightful daily soups. Providing distinctive meals, they pride themselves on offering a memorable dining experience. Torch Bistro has naked sushi, "Nyotaimori" in Japanese and means "female body presentation. It is by reservation only, and is available for parties of 8 to 14 patrons. The clients can select either a male or female model. Having two private dining rooms combines the essence of a luxurious experience. Once a month they also have theme parties, details are listed on their website. In addition, every year, Torch Bistro has a New Years Eve party, with over several hundred people attending to see fireworks and a live ball drop as they ring in the New Year. In addition to its main dining area, Torch in Punta Gorda, has an outdoor porch, two private dining rooms for a more exclusive, intimate culinary experience. Torch provides the perfect ambiance for business lunches, romantic dinners, socializing with friends and any private group celebration. Shane also makes sure dining is also available for your pets with a comfortable environment located on the front porch with high grade stainless steel utensils and a chef prepared companion menu. As the word spreads about Torch Bistro’s tasty, diverse one-of-a-kind menu; black Angus steaks, elk, bison, fresh seasonal and the all memorable “comfort foods,” has made them consistently praised by restaurant critics across the country including AOL, WINK, FOX and more. Shane and Heidi’s success is to their distinctive, great tasting food and the people who prepare and serve their unique creations with top-quality service every day.

Torch Bistro

2113 South Tamiami Trail Punta Gorda, FL 33950 941.575.3505 FOCUS of SWFL 2011 55

Amanda Adams

takes on the “Food Forest” at Florida Gulf Coast University By Kayla DaCosta

Amanda Adams along with over sixty other student supports have been in the process of creating and marketing a revolutionary concept-a food forest, designed to produce what is needed to supply families. The FGCU Food Forest is a botanical collection of tropical and subtropical edible species that grow well in South Florida. It also includes non-edible native species, which harbor a full array of native fauna and help to maintain the system. The species diversity is exceptional, and a testament to the potential we have in South Florida for a plentiful and sustainable lifestyle.


he Food Forest will be drastically different from the typical vegetable garden that dies off and must be replanted every season. While the student body will incorporate some annual fruits and vegetables, they plan on focusing mainly on cultivating tropical and sub-tropical perennial fruit trees that will provide food for decades to come. The point of using the food forest design model is to create "ecosystems" of food production.

Amanda Adams shared, “we are incorporating large canopy trees, smaller trees, vines, herbaceous plants, leguminous ground covers, and more to mimic the efficient way natural forest ecosystems function. The end result will be a self-sustaining, abundant source of food for the FGCU community into the future.” Currently members are doing earthworks to prepare the half-acre of land for planting. The group was strategic in bringing students together for a service-learning event May 13 and 14 at which approximately 50 students, faculty, and staff came out with shovels, pitchforks, and rakes to help the Food Forest execute the design of the Food Forest that includes pathways and raised beams. Adams shares, “there is still much work to be done and we are always accepting more volunteers!” If spending an afternoon soaking up the sun and getting your hands dirty for the cultivation of sustainable food supply sounds interesting, you can email the group at foodforestadvisorycouncil@

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Lou Ann Kapcin

Driving and Drawing a Straight Line

By Samantha Scott

Lou Ann Kapcin a project manager with Architecture Inc. for the last 4 years has been designing buildings and overseeing construction for clients for over 13 years. Having worked on diverse projects that include churches, schools and custom homes, she enjoys making clients ideas and vision become realities.


ne such realty is the recently completed 3,000 square foot renovation of the Community Cooperative Ministries Incorporated (CCMI) “Everyday Café” in Cape Coral. Lou Ann coordinated translating the artistic design in to the construction documents necessary to bring the project to life! The Everyday Café serves as a café and food pantry facility for needy persons in the area. “It was thrilling to be a part of this project,” commented Lou Ann. “Architecture Inc. as a firm is extremely community oriented, so it was a great fit too.” Lou Ann’s also a part of the next CCMI project that’s beginning to go under construction - renovating the organization’s facility in City of Fort Myers. But don’t think for a minute she’s all numbers and figures. Nights and weekends you’ll likely find her working on a race car or trackside at Sebring, Daytona or Homestead hanging with friends until her next race. Until HER next race? “I was not a frilly girl growing up; I helped my Dad work on cars. I am always amazed at the response people have when they find out I have

been building and racing Spec Miata’s for 9 years.” Spec Miata is a class of race car for road racing that allows for limited modifications in the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) and National Auto Sports Association (NASA) races. Being an independent thinker and single, Lou Ann named her team Maverick One Racing. She has also campaigned her car in Improved Touring and F-Production and racing at Road Atlanta and Roebling Road are goals for next race season. Lou Ann often hears people say, “I’ve always wanted to race cars.” but when asked why they haven’t followed their dream and the answers vary from I’m too old, it costs so much, it’s too hard, to no reason at all. “I don’t want to bust anyone’s bubble, excuses are excuses -racing, like anything you want in life takes planning and ACTION.” When she’s not racing, Lou Ann uses her valuable architecture skills to renovate her 60-yearold house. FOCUS of SWFL 2011 57

Look Sharp, Play Sharp

By Scott Black

Complementing a legendary musical career, several artists with over 30 years of musical experience, come together to bring the “Big Beat” to Southwest Florida. The band is comprised of a four-piece rhythm section -- piano, guitar, bass, drums and a horn section. Entourage a group of like-minded musicians including lead guitarist Steven Von sharts, bass Roger Lambert, keyboardist Chris Peterson, saxophonist Rodney Rojas, drummer Frank Abrami, and vocalists Erica Heiden and Anthony Barcelo, have been known to wow their audience.


ntourage has an extensive repertory of musical styles from rock, Latin, pop, international and American music. Some of the events in which the band performs are for occasions such as corporate, weddings, anniversaries, private parties and other events throughout Southwest Florida.

58 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

Spending time talking with Steven Vonsharts and the others I got a chance to understand their passion and history together which revealed why they jived so well. Each one of the members has a semblance about them that makes them unique. Frank Abrami, an intuitive drummer, has powerful yet controlled beats. He mastered the skillful art of drumming since the age of twelve. Steeped in a creative environment, Erica Heiden recollects memories of hanging out as a child with her parents having been involved in music for years. You can see how Erica has taken that talent to new levels. Anthony Barcelo has performed for over 30 years, talks how he feels so encouraged seeing the audience become part of the event. Rodney Rojas has grown up with his family playing saxophones and many other instruments, a truly talented guy. Chris Peterson, a hilarious musician, who lives his life the way he plays his music…Fun! Roger Lambert, who performs from a genuine place his heart, started playing at fourteen years old covering everything from soft rock to Jazz fusion. Steven Vonsharts

is a bold swinging hard playing musician who enjoys entertaining the audience with leads and rhythms from his guitar. This is a band you can get very comfortable with. Everyone is talented and adds their own personality that is unique and yet in sync. What sets them apart from other bands are the exceptional vocalists who are second to none. I could not help but notice how well both Erica and Anthony worked the stage as one. Listening to them perform you get to feel a real positive vibe between the music and the performance from both of them. It is like listening to your favorite storyteller.

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The conversation with Steven about Entourage continues in the traditions established by musical heroes including Frank Sinatra, Count Basie and Buddy Rich is a very important role to them and provides a direct influence of their sound. That is huge and is linked with sparking the interest in the creation of Entourage.

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One is struck with the revelation that looks are everything. The mention of how good a big band looks seems almost as important as their musical abilities. Similarly, the showmanship of a big band sometimes gives it that added appeal. Steven states “the importance of style, visual appeal, and looking good has given Entourage an edge that is rapidly spreading throughout Southwest Florida.” contact: 941.952.8342


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By Ann Gordon

In the wake of a revolution to eat healthier foods, there are customers who will not settle for the average burger and soda value menu. Some people say it’s difficult finding alternatives, but I say look around and ask around. And if you have, chances are that you heard of Café Gelato. The beautiful ambiance is just a perk, as frequent customers and new customers go there for breakfast, lunch and dinner to get a real taste of authentic Italian cuisine.


ocated in North Port within a prime location Café Gelato boasts open seating, lots of natural light and fresh air. A beautiful family restaurant, tucked away from the hustle and the bustle offers you a place for great dinning, quietness and a bit of nostalgia. Its traditional good food earns it as a quality restaurant and its clean, modern lines and leisurely atmosphere makes it a perfect place to enjoy an afternoon or evening. The frenetic energy that some may see at other shops is absent here. Rather, the atmosphere encourages you to slow down and appreciate your food. The owners, Luigi and Linda felt there was a need for a great Italian restaurant in the southwest region that serves Italian food with lots of warmth. Café Gelato has been around for seven years and will easily become your favorite place to eat. This 60 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

family owned business has such a warm atmosphere and it is with this same attitude that a great deal of effort is placed in making everything homemade; from dinner to dessert. The variety of handmade desserts behind the glass case is jawdropping and they taste just as good as they look. Although Café Gelato may be a casual cafe, its service is always on point. There is a significant chance that Luigi himself will be taking your order, or Linda serving you one of their flavorful fresh baked goods. Anyone can enjoy cool drinks, a dessert, even an espresso. I decided to go the pastry route, ordering a fruit tart that tasted both buttery and wonderfully light at the same time. In an effort to satisfy their customers Luigi and Linda decided to make their homemade sauce available to their customers. 1401 Pomodoro (tomato in Italian) is a delight for every palate. The richness of the sauce is bold in a freshness that is natural and tasty that came from Luigi’s father who learned how to make it from his mother. Having ordered a bottle of my own, 1401 Pomodoro made a big difference with the meal I prepared, similarly delicious. Now Luigi has prepared this special sauce from his father to your table, which is available at Café Gelato in North Port and Angelo’s Market in Venice.

Scott Fischer

Businessman with Motor Oil in His Blood By Samantha Scott


leader isn’t formed overnight, but forged through experiences and the gathering of knowledge. So is the story of one J. Scott Fischer – the man behind Scott Fischer Enterprises.

Scott is a hands-on, self-made man. His passion for motorsports began long ago when he entered the industry at just 15 years old. His first experience was in motorsports as an Enduro Racer. Enduro Racing is a form of motorcycle sport run predominantly off-road including

many different obstacles and challenges. Eventually, his passion grew and he purchased his first motorcycle store in 1988. From there Scott Fischer Enterprises formed - one strategic step at a time. Now a successful family of Harley-Davidson dealerships serving three states, Scott is active in the management of all of them, ensuring they offer each customer a true “Scott Fischer Experience”. He has many of the same employees working with him today and credits his success to surrounding himself with great people and having a true passion for the riding lifestyle. If you work hard and ride hard, as is Scott’s motto, you have to play hard too. Scott’s passion is not limited to motorcycles and his business, but also the community

and other hobbies. He, his wife Mary and their daughter Katie are heavily involved in nonprofit endeavors throughout Southwest Florida where they live. As the Founding member of the Lee County Blessings in a Backpack Board of Directors, Scott has had the ability to help feed hundreds of children in the area. Philanthropy is significant to him and he has committed to making his dealerships operate the same way. Along with Blessings in a Backpack, he has coordinated with the MDA, March of Dimes, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Any Solder, and PACE, as well as countless groups supporting veterans, children and the disabled. While Enduro Racing is in his past, in his free time, Scott still sneaks in golfing, boating, fishing and the occasional good cigar.

FOCUS of SWFL 2011 61

Dr. Craig R. Sweet Physician and Artist By Samantha Scott

As a Board Certified Reproductive Endocrinologist, I am the Founder and Medical Director of Specialists in Reproductive Medicine & Surgery in Fort Myers. We are in the midst of our 20th year and have helped thousands of people and couples build families. In fact, we just recently celebrated nearly 2,000 births.


hile my work fulfills me in many ways, I still feel the need to be otherwise creative. Since I have to work so much, I ended up blending work with pleasure, enjoying both at some level. I used to draw and even painted briefly, however, I have always enjoyed photography. Graphic design was a natural transition, combining both elements. It started about 20 years ago when I designed our first logo. I continued to develop my skills in my spare time and a few years ago entered a contest, just for fun. The contest was put on by SCOPE, the literary journal of Southern Illinois School of Medicine (my alma mater), a showcase for the artistic talents of the medical school community. The piece I entered was a digital image entitled “The Biologic Clock” I was utterly amazed to win first place for my image!

62 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

Over the years my graphic design efforts transferred to the web. I’ve created a few websites and created or at least modified nearly all the images on the sites. The most recent challenge was for Embryo Donation International (, a subdivision of Specialists in Reproductive Medicine & Surgery. Our gifted team developed the logo and web design. For my part, I enjoyed creating or modifying stock images throughout the site, as well as writing the copy for the site. Being a Reproductive Endocrinologist and an Obstetrician/Gynecologist, I suppose it was a labor of love.

The Omni Club Partner & Former Mr. America By Samantha Scott

Photo by EAS/Muscle

Boot Camp (one of the most popular classes The Club offers) and is responsible for bringing the small group training (Fight Club, TRX, PURE) to reality. He’s also responsible for bringing the Bodybugg program to Southwest Florida, a unique and personalized calorie and fitness tracking system.

William G. Davey, M.S., better known as Bill, is a staple of the fitness scene in Fort Myers. As a partner in The Omni Club, one of Fort Myers most well known gyms, people rely on him to stay healthy and fit. Bill’s focus on fitness started long before The Omni Club was around though. In fact, he was Mr. America in 1997! A body building show put on by the Amateur Athletic Union, the Mr. America competition is drug-tested and has been in existence since the early 1950s. Having been participating in competitive bodybuilding since 1991 it was the highlight of Bill’s competition days that continued through 2003. Bill helped found The Omni Club and is responsible for many components that set it apart of other gyms in the area. He designed the club concept from scratch, created Billy’s

As a partner in The Omni Club, Bill is responsible for continuing to develop new programs and revenue sources for The Club. Part of this is the purchase of a UFood Grill franchise slated to open within The Omni Club in the fall of 2011. Bill continues to teach Boot Camp and recently brought in a Medical Director to launch The Club’s Medically Supervised Weight Loss Program.


ill’s true passion is helping other people overcome barriers to physical fitness, helping them achieve and exceed their goals. A parent himself to three with another on the way, he’s expanding this to include children with a new high school athletic program and the development of an upcoming childhood obesity program The bottom line is, Bill Davey not only talks the talk, but he walks the walk and acts as an example for The Omni Club’s staff and members. His passion for health and fitness shine through in the many lives he has touched and continues to support through The Club.

FOCUS of SWFL 2011 63

Darryl Jones Man on a mission

By Dan Myricks

From electronic, dance, hip hop & R&B music has an exploding popularity with people around the world. Covering from New York to Florida Darryl Jones been preparing and developing recording artist for over thirty years, and as I sat awaiting his arrival I couldn’t help but notice his many talents as a photographer and makeup artist hanging from the walls, and the artist passing by introducing themselves to me; along with the sound of their music coming from the recording studio inside. It was like a whole new world of music and entertainment was about to emerge on to the music scene and it had a signature on it. When he walked in the energy level rose three degrees and questions came from all directions with a brief introduction to me by his assistant, then straight to the recording studio to listen to material for an album they’re working on for one of his new artist. The artist I met seem different in every right as thou they were polished and counting down on the launch pad. Hearing of fresh new talent, Darryl began penetrating the south and creating more of a demand for the artist he represents. At the very moment I can understand why he’s about to become the music industry’s newest man and it’s seems long overdue.


hroughout his career he’s gain access, worked with and photographed some of the most influential Recording Artist, Producers, Actors and Models to date such as Dave “JAM” Hall, Rodney Jerkins, Reheem DeVaughe, Lil Mama, Remy Ma, Derrick Simmons, Lucille Roberts, Warner Bros., Jive Records, RCA Records, Motown Records just to name a few and the soon to be talked about independent artist he represents. 64 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

After digging a little deeper his emotions finally came to surface a little bit about past artist he’s represented and the rebuilding of his company and the people he associates himself with. Every artist he’s represented he secured a financial situation

or deal from one of the Major Labels from Motown, Jive, RCA, Zomba, Warner Chapel to Sony and each artist he explains fell by the waste side never reaching a status of success which left him nearly broke from investing and developing them and unsure of his own future. But the one thing he could rely on was his gifted hands in photography and makeup. He’s truly a businessman, understanding how the music and fashion industry works knowing the inside of how the papers are pushed around within the labels and modeling agencies he explains “is the part that artist don’t understand because so many things have change with the rise of the internet and a lot faster than ever. But business is business as an artist you’ve got to put your time and work in” and as they say hurry up and wait but be ready when the opportunity comes. As I sat in his studio to listen it reminded me of how things use to be when Motown was at the head of the elm. Nevertheless he has a new book which is soon to be released “How To Make Your Money As A Recording due to hit the market this July will give an in-depth secret to independent artist on building a strong financial foundation and earning a living from proven capabilities he use to build a financial career from an artist perspective.

contact: 804.909.9964

Tyler “Doing Work” Offerman

By Kayla DaCosta

floated in my mind, saying nothing but simply smiling. In that instant I realized what my life would look like if I continued to waste it away to sin and selfishness. I would end up like my mother. I also realized how upset that would make my mother, who always told me that I would do greater things than her and make her proud, and my father, who had given up his dreams so that I would have the morals and resources to exceed. As I had the realizations, I could feel myself moving. When my attention returned to the room, I realized my hand was raised and I had just become the president of the newly formed South Florida Wildlife Association.”

Tyler Offerman, a Florida Gulf Coast University environmental studies student has quite a remarkable story. Apart from being a die-hard advocate for environmental sustainability and awareness, Offerman serves as a guide for students, faculty and the community. His dedication to his local community and his undying love for mankind makes Tyler Offerman both an outstanding student and humanitarian. His story is one that leaves much room for wonderment. Offerman contributes much of his success to his parents who inspired him in different ways. Tyler’s father was always an advocate of wild places and a collector of reptiles and amphibians. Offerman jokes, “I grew up with more pet turtles than human friends.” From birth, his father instilled in him a reverence and respect for nature that is at the core of his existence today. In addition, his father taught him how to think critically, to always question assumptions, and to align work ethics and social-ethics. On the other hand, Tyler’s mother inspired him in a completely different way. Not only did she suffer from alcoholism, she was deemed bi-polar disorder and suffered with a life-long battle against depression. She was in and out of Offerman’s life from that point forward, with times spent together being tumultuous at best. For his entire childhood, he never actually got to know his mother very much. The year he left childhood and became a teenager, he lost that chance forever; Offerman’s mother was diagnosed with small-cell cervical cancer, a rare and deadly form. Because his mother did not regularly see a doctor or generally take care of her health, even nine months of chemo could do nothing to save her. She passed away and took with her any chance of Offerman ever having a real mother to know and love.


ollowing the loss of his mother, Offerman went in a downward spiral. He began medaling with drugs and alcohol to fill the void in his heart. Soon enough he began to hate myself, unable to find closure or solace. He was arrested several times after he began hanging out with less than respectable groups of people, most of whom were older than himself. Offerman barely graduated High School and had no plans or direction for the rest of his life.

When he took the initiative to enroll at Florida Gulf Coast University, he had no direction or passion. Offerman decided to study art as a major because it was the only thing he remotely enjoyed. After he finished his first semester at FGCU in 2007 with straight C’s, Offerman realized he was wasting his life away. He states, “at the age of nineteen the only thing I had to show for myself was a lengthy arrest record and a couple of nasty scares. I was searching for a purpose. My second semester found me in a situation that would forever change my course and present me with what has now become my life’s purpose.” One of his professors, Dr. Phil Allman, asked him and several other students if they would be interested in coming to a meeting to discuss the formation of a campus club around wildlife and biology at FGCU. Offerman decided to join in on the meeting without any real expectations. The students talked and brainstormed about what a wildlife club would look like, and then came to the part of conversation where they were to nominate a president to build this organization from the ground up.

Becoming the president of SFWA was the first domino in a series of events that took Offerman from a lost youth to a young leader on Florida Gulf Coast University’s campus, throughout Florida and America. In 2009, Tyler was given the opportunity to attend a bi-annual, youth leadership summit called Power Shift (a project of a non-profit called the Energy Action Coalition) because of his involvement with SFWA. Power Shift 2009 was the convergence of the youth climate movement, something he had never heard of, and had introduced him to issues, people, and places that he could never have fathomed. 12,000 people converged in Washington, D.C. that year to tell the nation that the youth were here, were loud, and would not being taken for granted. He learned about issues such as Mountain-top Removal and Environmental Justice, participated in trainings and workshops on how to organize in communities. In addition, he lobbied his Congressional representatives.

Offerman offers, “most importantly, I met young people just like me who were leading fights in their communities against injustice, oppression, and destruction. I realized that if they could do it, so could I! I left Power Shift 2009 with something I Offerman states. “I still remember this had never had before, a purpose.” moment very clearly. A strange silence fell over the room and everyone startSince 2009, Offerman has not stopped ed giving each other sideways glances, following that purpose. He became seeing who would make the first move. the Director of Environmental InitiaI remember feeling kind of strange and tives for Florida Gulf Coast Univerhazy, like the way you feel when you sity’s Student Government in 2009 stand up too fast. ‘There is no way I and was awarded Director of the could do it’ I thought to myself. ‘I’m Year for his work. Currently, he sits a loser, I can hardly run my own life.’ on the Steering Committee for the Then I saw her, my mother. Her face Energy Action Coalition and helped FOCUS of SWFL 2011 65



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SLS AMG Roadster open-air pleasure

by Mai Yomioto

AMG is presenting a new dream-car: the 2012 SLS AMG Roadster. This super sports car thrills with a perfect combination of open-top driving pleasure, outstanding driving dynamics and sophisticated lightweight construction. The 2012 SLS AMG Roadster will make its U.S. debut in Fall 2011. The technological highlights of the 2012 SLS AMG Roadster include an aluminum space frame body, an AMG 6.3-liter V8 front-mid engine with dry sump lubrication developing a peak output of 563 hp and 479 pound-feet of torque, a seven-speed dual clutch transaxle transmission and a sports suspension with aluminum double wishbones – all of which will raise the pulse of sports car enthusiasts while providing outstanding driving dynamics and driving pleasure. Whether with the roof open or closed, the SLS AMG Roadster is an impressive visual delight!" The perfect proportions are particularly memorable: a long hood, the greenhouse positioned well to the rear and a short rear end. Plus the automatically extending rear wing, long wheelbase, wide track and short overhangs – in short, the convertible SLS AMG exudes effortless performance and an authentic charisma. The pronounced shoulder sections are reminiscent of tensed muscles, and suggest sheer power in combination with the large wheels - 265/35 ZR 19 (front) and 295/30 ZR 20 (rear). The compact fabric soft top of the SLS AMG Roadster opens and closes in just eleven seconds, and can be operated on the move at speeds up to 31 mph. The new Adaptive AMG Sport Suspension with electronically controlled damping is available as an attractive optional extra. It enables the damping characteristics to be modified at the touch of a button. Using the AMG DRIVE UNIT, the driver of the SLS AMG Roadster is therefore able to choose his own suspension setup. Three modes are available: "Comfort", "Sport" and "Sport plus". 68 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

The interior continues the breathtaking design idiom of the exterior, and awakens associations with an aircraft cockpit: prominent features include the dashboard in the shape of a wing and the air vents with adjustable, cruciform nozzles reminiscent of jet engines. The extended center console of matte, solid metal and the new E-SELECT lever in the shape of an aircraft's thrust control are also design features adopted from the world of aviation. Another discreet, fine detail is the embossed AMG emblem on the leather-lined selector lever. "AMG Performance Media" is a unique new feature: this innovative, motorsport-inspired multimedia system offers an unrivalled combination of numerous telemetric displays such as lateral and linear acceleration, various engine data and lap times on a racetrack. The different functions of AMG Performance Media are shown by the color display integrated into the dashboard. Three displays are shown at any one time, with the most important information positioned in the center. Digitally simulated dial instruments with red needles ensure outstanding legibility. Features reminiscent of the 300 SL Roadster, the classic dream-car from the 1950s, include not only the wide radiator grille with its large Mercedes star and the wing-shaped cross-fin, but also the fins on the hood and on the vehicle sides. Like the SLS AMG Roadster, the 300 SL Roadster appeared slightly later than the original gullwing 300 SL, but unlike the SL’s both AMG dream cars are available at the same time. Dr Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and CEO of Mercedes-Benz Cars: "The SLS Roadster is a super sports car, cruiser and highly desirable dream-car all in one. In its distinctive way, it continues the succession of iconic and exciting sports cars from Mercedes-Benz."

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Nested in the CENTER

By Pilar Corona

A place in Charlotte County some call " The Center". Situated along the Charlotte Harbor boating town; the conference is center to dining, arts, entertainment and lodging. Offering visitors and locals opportunities for team building, group and sponsored events. Let's not forget sports and activities for families as well. The Conference Center has over 44,000 square feet of event space and host several events thoughout the year, including the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, Home & Garden show, Big Boy Toy Expro, Amercian Business Women's Association, school events and more.

Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center

Upcoming Events EVENT: 2011 Women's National Golden Gloves Championships DATE: July 9, 2011

EVENT: Peace River Film Festival DATE: September 9-10, 2011

EVENT: King of the Harbor - MMA Fighting DATE: July 16, 2011

EVENT: Big Boy Toy Expo presented by Shell Marketing DATE: September 17-18, 2011

EVENT: Coastal Conservation Association Meeting DATE: July 26, 2011

EVENT: Southwest Wedding and Event Expo DATE: September 25, 2011

EVENT: American Business Women's Association Monthly Meeting EVENT: 3rd Annual Southwest Florida Green Futures Expo DATE: July 27, 2011 DATE: October 1, 2011 EVENT: 8th Annual Fred Lang Summer Ball DATE: July 30, 2011

EVENT: 3rd Annual Energy Options Conference DATE: October 5, 2011

EVENT: Florida Championship Wrestling Summer Slamarama DATE: August 3, 2011

EVENT: Musclemania- Florida Championships DATE: October 7-8,2011

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Eden Winery Southwest Florida’s Premiere Winery Tucked ten miles off the beaten path in Fort Myers lies the Eden Winery, Southwest Florida’s only winery. This hidden gem has quite the past, present and future. The vineyard is family owned by the Kiser family who started growing grapes over thirty years ago in an effort to see how the fruit’s growth took to Florida weather; owner’s aimed to produce the world’s finest wine. Today the winery produces a fine collection of Chardonnay, Cabernet sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Merlot, and Sangiovese. This collection is the direct result of hard work and a great strife to battle Florida’s unusual weather conditions. After a few years of growing grapes, owners realized that the grapes would eventually die off before cultivation of wine

could occur. Rather than giving up on the endeavor, they did extensive research to figure out the generation of the problem and how it could be combated. The culprit was Pierces Disease, a bacteria that attacked the grape specie they were attempting to breed. The Kiser family began a long battle to develop a hybrid grape that would yield growth. The results were not looked upon with enlightenment from the winery community so the family took to purchasing cuttings from hybrids generated at the University of Florida. These cuttings produced great results and after much trial and error, the Eden Winery became licensed at in 1986. In 2004, the entire of Southwest Florida was face to face with a tragedy-Hurricane Charlie. The hurricane caused grave devastation to the vineyard that still lies, without production, in Fort Myers. Because of the destruction the land is unusable. It is because of thoughtful planning that the winery still operates today. Owners developed a second location in Northern Florida. Today, all grapes are grown and developed into wine at this second location; The Fort Myer’s space serves as a landmark and sales area for the distributed wine. Enjoy taking a stroll around the property or trying the six different wines tingle your senses; the vineyard is open seven days a week 11am-4pm By Kayla DaCosta

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Burroughs Home & Garden The Burroughs Home and Garden serves as a blast from the past. The Georgian Revival Mansion, which was built in 1901 has quite the history. The estate was the “go to place� for many social events that brought together Fort Myers' elite includ-

The home sits cushioned on the corner of Fowler St. and First. Street in downtown Fort Myers. From any part of the house, one can absorb a magnificent view of the Caloosahatchee River. Located on 2.45 acres, the property is accessorized with rich vegetation, a freestanding fountain, a grotto and a reflecting pool. The house, bought for only a total of $15,000 in 1901, includes almost completely all of the original architecture.

ing the Edisons, Fords, and Firestones. Guests visiting the home can expect the be dazzled by antique furnishings, masses of historical artifacts, and guided tours encompassing stories of growing up under the fine roof of wealthy businessman

Today, apart from providing the public with exquisite beauty, Burroughs Home and Garden is a haven for tourism and events. Tours are biweekly and the home is well known for being the prime spot for celebrating weddings. The newest venture consists of tea and crumpets. Weekly Tea Parties usually occur on Wednesdays. The Burroughs Home & Gardens are without a doubt one of Fort Myers go-to-destinations!

Nelson Burroughs and his wife Adeline.

74 FOCUS of SWFL 2011

By Kayla DaCosta

FOCUS of SWFL 2010 75

Focus People of SWFL  
Focus People of SWFL  

Summer is about fun, family and enjoyment. Also, the many people in Southwest Florida that make it a fun place to live. This is a peoples is...