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February 2017


ual n n A ool h c s Pre tory! c Dire

20 Reasons to Love the Library Helpful Hints for Homeschooling Cheap & Fun Dates For Valentine’s Day Generational Journeys: Taking a Special Trip with Grandparents NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017


Mark your calendar for the Collier County Fair! Thursday, March 16 to Sunday, March 26! Featuring Rides, Games, Demolition Derby, Family Living / Livestock Competitions, Live Music, Food, & So Much More! Our event will also feature a STEAM Initiative (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Math).

Tickets on Sale NOW Megapasses - $25.50 Child Fair Admission - $5.50 Adult Fair Admission - $10.50

For more information, go to

Did You Know? The Collier County Fairgrounds is not a part of Collier County or State of Florida government and thus receives no tax dollars or other subsidies. We are a private, not-for-profit organization dedicated to enriching our community by promoting education and South West Florida agriculture while showcasing and rewarding youth achievement. We accomplish this by producing a first-class eleven day Fair each Spring with quality family entertainment and providing facilities and resources for year-round events. Over the years we have given back to a long list of other not-for profits and charities throughout our community. Your money stays here, and we thank you all for supporting us.

CollierCoFair 2

Collier County Fair NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

Join us for Open House at our Bizarre Bazaar Saturday, February 25, 8AM —12Noon

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NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017



in every issue . . . 07



REEL LIFE WITH JANE Movie reviews for the entire family


CITY CONNECTION City of Naples Parks News and Events






FAMILY LAW Legal experts provide guidance


How to Homeschool. You’ve made the decision to educate your kids at home: here’s how to pull it off. by Leigh Tahirovic


Fun and Budget Friendly Date Ideas. If you are tired of the same old nights out, change things up this Valentine’s Day. by Anna Snyder


Love Your Library. 20 reasons why we love Collier County’s public libraries. by Leigh Tahirovic


Destination. Your child will make a lifetime of memories on a solo trip with her grandparents. by Karen T. Bartlett


February is American Heart Month. A 23-year-old stroke survivor shares her harrowing and inspiring story to educate us about the critical signs of a stroke. by Mary Ann Green


Annual Preschool Guide. A directory of the best preschools in Naples to help you select the right one for your toddler.

on the cover…

Hanah Samuel is in grade 9 at Community School of Naples and Nathan Samuel is in grade 6 at North Naples Middle School. They are the children of Darren Samuel and Tammy Strohl-Samuel of Naples. Darren is president/CFO of SA Feather Co., Inc. and Tammy is a personal injury attorney for the Law Office of Tammy Strohl, PA. Cover photo by Peggy Farren of Avant Garde Photography • 239-263-7001

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OUTSTANDING. Meet Dr. Brent Lovett, Senior Child Psychiatrist at David Lawrence Center. A board-certified child, adolescent and adult psychiatrist, Dr. Lovett has spent 25 years in community mental health and private practice. He’s a member of our expert team dedicated to creating life-changing wellness for every child and family.

AND LOCAL. David Lawrence Center has the largest multidisciplinary behavioral health treatment team in Collier County. Our community’s health and safety rely on the board-certified child, adolescent, and adult psychiatrists, specialized nurses, therapists, and case managers who provide advanced, comprehensive care on-site, and in schools and homes.

DISCOVER WORLD-CLASS MENTAL HEALTH CARE RIGHT AT HOME If someone you know needs help, call our mental health specialists for life-changing wellness.

239.455.8500 NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017 NAPLES





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Preparing Children for Success in Kindergarten

AT THE GREATER NAPLES YMCA WE KNOW THE IMPORTANCE OF EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION As the largest provider of childcare in Collier County, the Y provides early education to more children than any other non-profit in the region. YMCA programs allow children to explore their unique talents and interests, helping them realize their full potential. That makes for confident kids today and contributing and engaged adults tomorrow. THE CREATIVE CURRICULUM Second only to human relationships, a wellplanned curriculum helps define a child’s experience in our Early Education program. To ensure that our program delivers high quality activities and interactions, we have embraced The Creative Curriculum GOLDplus, developed by Teaching Strategies, Inc. This curriculum is standardized and built to dovetail perfectly with Collier County School District’s kindergarten programs. The curriculum focuses on creating a responsive environment for the children, where they will be physically and emotionally stimulated with materials, sounds, and experiences. We carefully plan daily routines and experiences, focusing on personal growth and development, making sure they are individualized to each child. Children will participate in dramatic play, creative art, discovery, library, music, computers and outdoor activities. The child’s own personal care is also individualized to their own needs. Another aspect of the Creative Curriculum focuses on guiding children’s behavior in a positive way. Unique to the Y, our students will also have the opportunity to participate in other YMCA


programs such as swim lessons, youth sports, cooking classes and more! Building relationships with the families is a very important part of a successful infant and toddler program. We offer Parent/Teacher Conferences at least two times a year and additional conferences can also be set up as needed. Lesson plans are posted in the classroom, along with a monthly calendar of classroom events. This is a great extension to the child’s learning and helps you and your child make the important connection between home and school. OUR EDUCATORS Our highly qualified educators represent a diverse background of early childhood education and experience. Our educators value learning and are provided with ongoing professional development opportunities to enhance leadership, support core competencies and integrate knowledge of early childhood education/ child development. Since 2007, our program has had at least one teacher nominated as an Apple Blossom Teacher of the Year and has often times taken home the award. CONVENIENT LOCATIONS The Greater Naples YMCA has three convenient locations throughout Collier County that offer our world-class Early Education program from ages 3 months to 5 years.

YMCA Gaynor Early Learning Center helps care and educates children from infancy through preschool. NCEF Early Childhood Development Center: Located in the Florida Southwestern State College campus. This innovative, LEED-certified award winning building was originally funded and opened by NCEF in 2008. The center boasts seven classrooms, a children’s art studio and a creative playground. The seven age-appropriate classrooms directly open to outdoor play areas that provide a learning environment centered on play and nature. Veterans Memorial Early Education Center: Located at Veterans Memorial Elementary School. Through this formal agreement the Naples YMCA has been offering children enrolled in the district with ongoing assistance in reading, music and communication skills through our Teaching Strategies GOLDplus curriculum. The early education program at Veterans Memorial Elementary School (VME) primarily serves the district employees and families residing nearby. To learn more about our Early Education program or to register, please visit: or call 239.963.3778

The Gaynor Early Learning Center: Located in the YMCA Healthy Living Campus. As Naples’ largest early childhood education facility, our

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

from the publisher… the parenting magazine devoted to collier county

P.O. Box 110656 Naples, FL 34108 Co-Publisher Leigh Ann Newman graphic design, accounting, editorial 239-272-0529 Co-Publisher Stacy Nicolau advertising, marketing, social media, editorial 239-370-5333 Travel Editor Karen T. Bartlett 239-595-9026 Feature Writers Anna Snyder Leigh Tahirovic Cover Photographer Peggy Farren Editorial submissions are welcome. We reserve the right to edit, reject, or comment editorially on all material contributed. We cannot be responsible for return of any unsolicited materials. Articles and advertisements in Neapolitan Family do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the publisher nor does the publisher assume responsibility for statements made by our advertisers or editorial contributors. Acceptance of advertising by Neapolitan Family does not constitute an endorsement of the products, services, or information. We do not knowingly present any product or service which is fraudulent or misleading in nature.

THIS MONTH: Education

February is full. Naples is full of northerners seeking refuge from the cold, and Neapolitan Family is full to bursting this month. We have so much to offer you in February that some of it is going to have to wait until next month, so we hope you’ll join us again in March. Right now, we’re focusing on education, as this is the time many parents start to investigate preschool options for their toddlers. Our Annual Preschool Guide on page 36 can help, as it lists the best preschools in town. On page 12, writer Leigh Tahirovic offers advice from local parents who have chosen to homeschool their children on the logistics of day-to-day life as a homeschooling family. Combining education with American Heart Month on page 34 is the inspiring story of Taylor Van Netta, a local 23-year-old who survived a stroke and is on a mission to ensure everyone knows how to recognize the signs of a stroke. We can’t ignore Valentine’s Day, so on page 16 Anna Snyder offers up some unique and budget-conscious options for a night out with your significant other or a group of friends. If your first love is literary, Leigh Tahirovic gives us 20 reasons on page 18 to love the Collier County Library system. Yes, “books” is number one, but some of the remaining 19 may surprise you. Finally, Karen Bartlett, our travel editor, provides us with family friendly adventures for a once-in-a-lifetime trip for grandkids and grandparents on page 22. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Neapolitan Family is available free of charge at more than 275 distribution points throughout Collier County as well as digitally at Neapolitan Family is ©2017 by Neapolitan Family Publishing LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without written permission is strictly prohibited. NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017



By Jane Louise Boursaw

Family Movie & DVD Reviews New movies for kids and teens in February include a new LEGO installment and a fun comedy about a musical dog. Note that release dates are subject to change. may have to drop the lone vigilante thing, try to work with others, and maybe, just maybe, learn to lighten up. Directed by Chris McKay, this movie stars Will Arnett, Zach Galifianakis, Michael Cera, Rosario Dawson, and Ralph Fiennes. ROCK DOG Rated PG for action and language In Theaters 2/24 • Ok for Kids 6+ Reel Preview: 3 of 5 Reels

THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE Rated PG for rude humor and some action In Theaters 2/10 • Ok for kids 6+ Reel Preview: 4.5 of 5 Reels In the spirit of irreverent fun that made “The LEGO Movie” a worldwide hit, LEGO Batman gets his own big screen adventure. There are big changes brewing in Gotham, and if he wants to save the city from The Joker’s hostile takeover, Batman

The Tibetan Mastiffs living on Snow Mountain have one goal: guard a peaceful village of wool-making sheep from the thuggish wolf Linnux (Lewis Black) and his rabid pack. To avoid distractions, Mastiff leader Khampa (J.K. Simmons) forbids all music from the mountain. But when his son Bodi (Luke Wilson) discovers a radio dropped by a passing airplane, it takes just a few guitar licks for his fate to be sealed: Bodi wants to be a rock star. But that means defying his father’s wishes, heading to the city, and locating the legendary musician Angus Scattergood (Eddie Izzard), who needs to write a new song and fast. If Bodi can put a band together, help Angus with his song, and defeat the wolves’ plot to take Snow Mountain, his life will be in tune. Directed by Ash Brannon, this fun movie also stars Kenan Thompson, Mae Whitman, Jorge Garcia, Matt Dillon, and Sam Elliott.

JANE’S REEL RATING SYSTEM One Reel–Even the Force can’t save it. Two Reels–Coulda been a contender. Three Reels–Something to talk about. Four Reels–You want the truth? Great flick. Five Reels–Wow. The stuff dreams are made of. JANE BOURSAW is the film critic and editor-in-chief of Reel Life With Jane. Images used with permission of the studios and distributors.




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Fabulous February Family Fun Entertainment, classes, and sports offered by the City of Naples.

Kick and Get Fit With Martial Arts Fleischmann Park offers martial arts classes for children as young as age 5. Choices include Couong Nhu Karate on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 6-7:30 p.m., and Muai Thai Kick Boxing on Mondays and Wednesdays, 4:30-5:30 p.m. and 5:30-6:30 p.m. Call 239-213-3020 for prices, dates, and registration. (1600 Fleischmann Blvd., Naples) Free Tuesday Morning Nature Talks Bring your children and learn together how nature can flourish in urban and suburban areas, with the proper care. The Naples Preserve continues its tradition of a free nature talk series featuring guest speakers from natural areas around Southwest Florida. All talks at 10 a.m. Tuesdays. The schedule is: Feb. 7, “Me and My Watershed”; Feb. 14, “Long-Term Hurricane Activity in Southwest Florida: What It Can Tell Us About

Future Storminess”; Feb. 21, “Swamp Survival”; Feb. 28, “Fins and Feathers: Understanding Important Links Between Our Freshwater Fish and Wading Birds.” Call 239-261-4290. (1690 Tamiami Trail N., corner of US 41 & Fleischmann Blvd.)

p.m.; Naples Big Band on Monday, Feb. 13 at 7 p.m.; Gulfcoast Big Band on Sunday, Feb. 26 at 2 p.m.; Stardust Memories Big Band on Monday, Feb. 27 at 7 p.m. Call 239-213-3058. (755 Eighth Avenue S., Naples)

Baby Fitness (18 months & older)

Free Concert at River Park Community Center

Instill healthy habits for life in your toddler by attending the Mommy and Me Open Gym on Fridays, 10-11:30 a.m. $5 per child. For details, call 239-213-3020. (1600 Fleicshmann Blvd., Naples)

The Jazz Masters will present a free concert of Dixieland jazz at the Community Center on Saturday, Feb. 11 at 2 p.m. Call 239213-3037. (301 11th Street N., Naples)

Free Concerts at the Bandshell

Parents’ Night Out Hosted by Miss Cricket

Bring a blanket for the whole family and enjoy free jazz concerts in Cambier Park. Naples Dixieland Jazz Band on Sunday, Feb. 5 at 2 p.m.; Stardust Memories Big Band on Monday, Feb. 6 at 7 p.m.; Naples Concert Band on Saturday, Feb 12 at 2

Dinner, games, and a movie, hosted by Miss Cricket, equals a tired kid to pick up. Friday, Feb. 17, 6-9:30 p.m.; $20. Preregistration required. Call 239-213-3020. (1600 Fleicshmann Blvd., Naples)

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By Amanda Jackson, Communications & Community Engagement

A World of Opportunity at LWTC

incy Francois didn’t know what she wanted to do after graduation this June. The Lely High School senior, along with classmate Myrlandine Jeune Gens, didn’t realize there was a whole world of opportunity right here in Naples. Last month, seniors from all eight Collier County Public Schools (CCPS) high schools visited Lorenzo Walker Technical College (LWTC) to learn more about getting on the path to college and career readiness. Students visited many of LWTC’s career-in-a-year programs. They toured Cosmetology; Practical Nursing; Veterinary Assisting; Heating, Ventilation, and Air-Conditioning (HVAC); and many more programs. “I thought I was just going to be interested in cosmetology, but when I saw nursing, I quickly changed my mind,” Francois said. “It doesn’t take as long as I thought to become a nursing assistant.”

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

Before touring LWTC, Jeune Gens was interested in studying phlebotomy. “When I came here and we went to HVAC, I was shocked. I didn’t know Lorenzo had that kind of program. It amazed me that I could do this one day,” she said. While the students toured HVAC, multiple Lely High School alumni in the program shared their experiences and stories. “It was inspiring to see students from Lely, from my background, that came from Haiti and were English Language Learner students, actually in this program. It made me think, if he can do it, I can do it too,” Jeune Gens said. One of the stops on the tour was at student services. Staff discussed how realistic it is to attend LWTC, with the help of scholarships and financial aid. While the average cost of a four-year Bachelor’s degree is $52,522, the average cost of a one-year certificate program is $5,249. This makes post-secondary education at LWTC an

feasible option for students. “These are seniors who are just months away from graduating,” said CCPS Superintendent Kamela Patton. “For them to know they have options and opportunities and actually see them is so important.” Patton attended the tour with Lely students and got to see their reactions firsthand. “I think it’s different when a student takes a tour alone,” she said. “When you’re sending a cohort of their peers, it’s okay to entertain this thought, ask questions, continue the conversations, and get excited about the future.” Students will be continuing the conversations during their English classes at school. The next step will be a parent and family night where parents can learn more about making LWTC a reality. “After high school, I want to start school in August. I really want to start here,” Francois said. “I’m going home and starting my application now.”


EDUCATION By Leigh Tahirovic

Give Your Child a Home Education with Confidence

The Koehneke family of Estero takes advantage of both indoor and outdoor spaces while homeschooling. Left to right: Issac (3) visits the botany sensory tub on the lanai, and works on his letters; Nature study for Adelae (9) and Peter (5); and Peter drills his memory work on the hopscotch in the outdoor classroom mom Sarah is building.


f you are considering homeschooling your child, it can be overwhelming, something you may think is better left to experts trained to educate. But one Naples mother wants those considering homeschooling to remember: “A parent is a child’s first and primary teacher.” For Lisa Perri, she saw home education as a chance to foster character development in her three children – Daniel, 17; Anna, 16; and Luke, 14 – who have always been homeschooled. It was a journey Perri took one year at a time, but now that she is prepping Daniel for college she calls it a great joy. But don’t try to duplicate a public school classroom, she said. Instead mold your child into being a lifelong learner. “Some days are a wash, and that’s ok,” said Perri, who has no formal training as a teacher. “Math might be a real-world lesson like baking cookies.” One suggestion Perri has for parents interested in home education is to find outside resources by joining groups like FPEA (Florida Parent-Educators Association), RISE (Raise Up, Instruct, Support, Encourage), or Southwest Florida Homeschooling Families, just to name a few. Organizations like Naples Art Association, C’mon (Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples), and Artis–Naples offer programs for visual or performing arts. Homeschooling mom Jennifer LeMay agrees. “It’s important to have a support system. Get plugged in to one or several 12

[groups], either faith-based, activity-based, or those that have field trip opportunities,” said LeMay, who is area representative for Classical Conversations, a faith-based homeschooling program that establishes parent and student support groups for encouragement, fellowship, and accountability, as well as offering other home education services. She advises parents to ask themselves, “What is an education and what does that mean to your family?” If you are starting with elementary age, it’s easy to lump your children into one group where most schooling is done together as a family unit, especially when children are close in age. But if your children have attended traditional school, either public or private, recognize that there will be a period of adjustment. LeMay explained that each year of traditional school equals about one month of time it will take to learn how to live together and school together. “Part of homeschooling is teaching [kids] the values, character, and heart training,” said LeMay. “It’s not so scary.” And know that if it doesn’t work out, Collier County Public School District will welcome your student back. Coordinator of School Counseling for grades 9-12, Chris Smith said there are about 1,450 homeschool students in Collier County. He said parents should choose a home education model that aligns with Florida education standards. “If your math curriculum in sev-

enth and eighth grade [doesn’t align], you will have a difficult time in high school,” noted Smith, if the student re-enters a public high school in Collier County. Another point Smith wants to drive home to parents considering home education: there is no diploma issued from CCPS. He said parents are surprised to learn this because there is “so much emphasis on that piece of paper.” In Classical Conversations, the parent issues the diploma, said LeMay. Perri too has her children enrolled in a program that maintains an official transcript of completed courses, and will present Daniel with a diploma next year once he graduates. She recommends that parents create a transcript for college acceptance. “A transcript is helpful so admission officers can compare my child to other children applying.” To be ready for college, Smith strongly suggests parents and the student speak directly to the potential college or university, especially if it is out of state. In LeMay’s experience, many colleges welcome homeschoolers. “They are getting into colleges everywhere, like West Point … and are sought after more and more,” said LeMay, adding that she believes it’s because the homeschool student has learned how to study independently. At the start, new homeschool parents can expect their child or children will need more attention. For Perri, she saw firsthand NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

how one subject would cross into another, but there was always a separate lesson for math and English. “We would often have discussions together, but the older the child got, I expected a greater understanding of the subjects,” Perri continued. “Now [in high school] there is more independent study, but it’s more intellectually challenging. As a parent, there is more mental fatigue.” Rely on the experts One area where a subject can cross over is at the Baker Museum at Artis–Naples. Parents can reach out to the director of education and community partnerships, Bonnie Thayer, for assistance to tailor a museum tour to a history lesson. Or attend a performance featuring the Naples Philharmonic, which presents musical programs several times a year geared especially to children. These performances are promoted on the website just like other concerts and are open to anyone wishing to attend. “We are specialists in these fields [of art and music],” said Thayer, “It’s a wonderful resource to tap into.” Another tip Thayer has is to plan your museum visit with a Make-and-Take workshop, held on Collier County Public

Valuable Links for Home Education 4 4 4 4 4 classes-kids/ 4 4 homeschool-programs/ School early dismissal days or non-school days. Each project relates to an exhibit on display in the Baker Museum, which is always free to anyone 17 and under. The next workshop is March 17 and is inspired by the exhibit Robert Indiana: Love, Hope, and Art. If you children are musically inclined, they can take part in the youth music or choir ensembles for middle and high school students. Auditions are required for acceptance. For more information, request the Education Resource Guide from Thayer. The more you know... When considering home education, don’t forget to do lots of research. The

more a parent knows and understands, the easier it is to begin. Ask around, LeMay suggested. “You probably know someone who is already homeschooling.” And attend as many information sessions as possible for home education groups, like Classical Conversations hosts throughout the year (visit and click on the tab labeled Connected for dates). The Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) is perhaps the best resource for a parent interested in home education. It outlines the laws for home education in each state on its website and the organization provides legal support to its members. The fee is $100 a year, or $1,000 for a lifetime membership. Visit “As I begin exiting home school,” Perri said of her kids nearing graduation. “I hope that I have set my children up for success [and] they have learned perseverance and can now see something through completion.” Leigh Tahirovic is a wife and mother who loves traveling and Civil War history. She moved to Naples in 2001 and began a career in journalism. Leigh is a freelance writer for magazines and newspapers in South Florida.

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C’mon Wins Grant to Renovate Popular Mother Nature’s House


he Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples (C’mon) received a $15,000 grant from the Edward T. Bedford Foundation to aid in the renovation of Mother Nature’s House. Mother Nature’s House is one of the most popular exhibits within the museum, which has had more than 650,000 visitors since opening in 2012. This special house has four rooms, each representing a different season from a different section of the United States, with an array of hands-on activities to experience the season to its fullest. “We are excited to start the renovation of Mother Nature’s House,” said Karysia Demarest, executive director of C’mon. “This exhibit could use some enhancements after being loved by so many of our visitors throughout the years. Original attendance forecasts were 50,000 visitors annually. Instead we’ve been averaging 130,000 each year since opening. We are most grateful to the Edward T. Bedford Foundation for helping us jump-start this important project.” For additional information, visit or call 239-5140084. C’mon is located at 15080 Livingston Road in Naples.

Art Classes for Kids with Autism Offered at Alliance for the Arts


he Alliance for the Arts, in partnership with Family Initiative Inc., is now offering weekly art classes for young artists with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The program, ArtPlay, is designed to engage children with ASD in the arts while focusing on identity development, self-awareness, self-esteem, social communication, and building positive coping skills. ArtPlay classes, designed for young artists under 18, are taught by a certified art therapist. ArtPlay classes are Thursdays from 4:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Session 2 classes will be held on February 16, 23, and March 2. Session 3 is March 16, 23, and 30. The program takes place at the Alliance for the Arts, 10091 McGregor Blvd., Fort Myers. The cost is $10 per class, which includes art supplies. Preregistration is required. Students must respond to verbal direction, independently toilet, and not require one-on-one supervision. For more information, call 239-939-2787 or visit ArtInLee. org/ArtPlay. NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

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HOLIDAYS By Anna Snyder

Date Ideas for Valentine’s Day That Won’t Bust Your Budget


alentine’s Day is this month (along with Galentine’s Day – fans of the popular show Parks & Recreation understand the importance of this holiday, which celebrates female friendship and falls on February 13 every year), and I have a few ideas for places and activities around town that you may not have considered for your next night out. As parents, it can be difficult to mix up our routines when it comes to nights out. My husband and I typically rotate between two local restaurants. Diverging from our rotation is hard – it takes planning ahead and a certain amount of preparation. The same goes for a girls’ night out: when organizing this type of event, it takes courage and excitement to suggest something different. We all need to experience new places, so I’ve suggested a few unique, reasonably-priced date nights, or nights out with friends. For me, a night out is about a shared experience – creating a happy or meaningful memory and deepening my relationships. So here are three possible date nights – all including food and an activity – that you and your significant other (or friends) can enjoy for around $20 per person. There are some fantastic ideas from our readers at the end of this article. Paying for a babysitter creates an added layer of financial complexity. For those fortunate enough to have family members living close by who are willing to be caregivers, fantastic! Take advantage of that opportunity with a grateful heart. For parents on a budget who do not have family members living in town, find or form a date night co-op. Parents take turns watching one another’s children on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. Finding or forming this type of group has obvious challenges, but many find the benefits to be worth the frustrations.


Golf & Tacos Putt putt golf is an inexpensive way to enjoy a little friendly competition in a fun atmosphere for both couples and groups. Head to Coral Cay Adventure Golf on the East Trail for a round of mini golf among several waterfalls and lush greenery. Coral Cay is open every day from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m., weather permitting. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, drive two miles down the road to Tacos & Tequila, which is open every day from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. (regardless of the weather). Open for just three years, T&T already has become a Naples institution for its creative tacos and specialty margaritas (take advantage of the 2-for-1 margarita special every Sunday and Tuesday). If you’re looking for something closer to North Naples or Bonita Springs, Golf Safari, a safari-themed mini golf course, is located on Bonita Beach Road, west of 41. Open every day from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., Golf Safari provides a collection of life-sized fiberglass safari animals, tiki huts, and waterfalls. “We have lots of couples come for date nights – some come to enjoy healthy competition; others just want to have fun,” said Cindy Buehl, who has managed Golf Safari for 30 years. “We have an 18 hole course, but people who come can play as many rounds as they’d like.” When you sign up for Golf Safari’s emails (through which they periodically send out coupons), you get a $5 off coupon immediately that applies to all people in your party, bringing the total per person to about $6. Afterward, head over to Taco Mix (also located on Bonita Beach Rd.), a very low-key Mexican cheap eats-type restaurant. Most menu items are between $3 and $5, and they serve bottled beer and other sodas. The food is simple, flavorful, and reasonably NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

priced. Though the restaurant’s atmosphere isn’t what you’d call high-end, the restaurant is a relatively quiet, enjoyable place to have a good time over a few tacos and a beer. A tour for the beer and board game enthusiasts Pack some sandwiches, a bag of chips, and homemade cookies, and take a tour of three of Southwest Florida’s breweries: Momentum Brewhouse (Bonita Springs), Bone Hook Brewery (North Naples), and Riptide Brewing Company (Central Naples). Momentum is a modern, neighborhood brewhouse for people of all ages and offers craft beer, arcade games, board games, ping pong, corn hole, and giant Jenga. Kate Hahn, owner of Momentum, opened the tasting room and brewery with her husband two years ago. “The atmosphere at Momentum is more like a coffee house than a bar,” Hahn said. “Our goal is to make people feel comfortable and want to spend time in the tasting room.” Travel south to Immokalee Road and stop by Bone Hook Brewing Company, which recently opened in the new Creekside Corners Plaza. Bone Hook offers an atmosphere with higher-end furnishings and a laid-back atmosphere. “It’s not your traditional industrial space brewery feel,” said Michelle Russell, tap room manager. “We have indoor and open air areas in which to spend time enjoying our wide selection of beer and wine. We also have menus from plaza restaurants, who deliver right to your table.” After experiencing Bone Hook, drive south on Goodlette Road to Riptide Brewing Company in downtown Naples. A warm, welcoming, buzzing atmosphere creates a fitting end to your Southwest Florida craft brewery tour. “We have a fun and laid-back atmosphere with numerous craft beers (our own and other local brewery’s beers), wines, and non-alcoholic drinks,” said Rita Alexander, who owns Riptide along with husband Scott Alexander. Play a competitive game of Scrabble, or enjoy live music in a homey environment. All of the breweries have live music on various nights of the week, as well as menus available for people to order food to be delivered to the brewery. Momentum and Riptide offer local food trucks on specific nights of the week. For more information about entertainment, special events, and food trucks, I’ve found Facebook to be most helpful and up-to-date. Most of the beers (and ciders, wines, soft drinks, etc.) available at each of the three breweries are between $5 and $7, making it possible to enjoy an evening out and visit all three locations for between $15-20 per person.

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Conscious Eating, Lovely Courtyard & Local Music 100% organic café, eatery, juice and coffee bar, and grocery store, Food & Thought is tucked away in the Gateway Plaza on the corner of Golden Gate Parkway and 41 in Naples. Food & Thought is the place for reasonably-priced, organic, and sustainable dining. Live music is available a few nights of the week, making it a great one-stop night out that won’t break the bank. The store’s mission is “to make everyone who shops here, and everyone who works here, a happier, healthier, more self-sufficient person,” according to Jameson Johnson, store manager. The store “can accommodate almost any diet. Our menu offers lots of vegan, vegetarian, dairy free, paleo, and gluten free meals.” Food & Thought also serves wine, beer, fresh pressed juices, and coffee. The atmosphere is delightful, especially in the courtyard area underneath oak trees wrapped in strings of lights. As a walk-up restaurant, diners don’t have to feel rushed and can enjoy live music in a friendly environment. Café menu items are offered a la carte, and you can get a drink, plate of food, and dessert for under $20 per person. More suggestions If you’ve already tried the ideas above, or they just don’t sound appealing, here are a few more from local parents. • “We love grabbing takeout and eating on the beach for sunsets.” Alex, Naples mom of two. • “The fire pits at La Playa are nice, and you can bring your own wine (or s’mores fixings).” Rachel, Naples mom of one. • “We love morning dates! We bring our coffee down to the Naples City Dock to sit and talk.” Sally, Naples mom of three. • “Grab a big blanket, bottle of wine, pick up a pizza from Napoli’s, and go eat on the beach! It’s our go-to, easy dinner date!” Kerry, Naples mom of two. • “Mel’s Diner in Bonita Springs – because of the $3 martinis!” Emma, Naples mom of one. • “Ice skating at Germain Arena.” Aubrey, Naples mom of two. • “We enjoy day dates at Wiggins Pass State Park – we like to go paddle boarding.” Stacy, Naples mom of two. • “Tuesday $6 movies at the Prado followed by ice cream!” Karrissa, Naples mom of two. • “We enjoy bringing board games to the beach.” Tia, Naples mom of four. • “We like to go to the Naples Beach Hotel to get a drink and enjoy the sunset.” Kristen, Naples mom of three.


YOUR COMMUNITY By Leigh Tahirovic

We Love the Library!

20 reasons why Collier County libraries rock One of the greatest reasons to live in Collier County is the beautiful beaches, but another is the stellar library system. With 10 locations, the Collier County Public Library – with free, unlimited Wi-Fi – has something for everyone and because February is Library Lovers’ Month, here are 20 reasons to love your library. 1. Books. At every library, 3 to 15 months; Toddler Story there is a plethora of reading Time, ages 16 to 35 months; and options for all ages. Choices Music and Movement, ages 3 to include hot new releases of 5 years. A new Family Story Time both fiction and non-fiction; recently started on Saturdays. titles from bestseller lists; an Times vary but all are offered at enormous collection of titles the Headquarters Regional Lifor adults, plus serial books brary, 2385 Orange Blossom Dr., for binge reading; young adult Naples. Registration is required and children’s books and even except for Family Story Time. picture books for infants; as well The Naples Regional Library as comic books (for any age!). offers Combined Story Time for Don’t forget to put your soughtall ages, and the Estates Branch after title on hold. Library hosts Toddler Story Time 2. Adult Programs. A large and Preschool Story Time; regisselection of adult programs – tration is not required at either including those for book lovers of these libraries. Other libraries like book discussions, the Meet host a Walk-In Activity Time on Our cover models Hanah and Nathan Samuel study in the the Author series and the Mystery different days. beautiful courtyard at the Headquarters Library in Naples. Book Club for those who love the 7. Kids’ programs. Entercrime/mystery genre – are hosted at every 4. Magazines and newspapers. Do you tain the kids with fun programs at various library. Adults can register for programs like holding a newspaper in your hand? You libraries every month. Programs vary but such as fitness classes or attend lectures can read from the 16 newspaper selections at some previous options include Pokémon about health care and Ted Talks. Hob- various branches. Prefer magazines? Nearly Go Scavenger Hunts, Frozen Singalongs, byists can opt for programs on coloring 200 titles are available. Patrons can check out Valentine Workshops, Penny Olympics books and stamping. The Feature Film past issues while the current issue is only ac- (where children will complete penny chalSeries is enticing, too. A new calendar of cessible in-house. The library also maintains lenges to support Presidents’ Day), and the offerings is released each month. Registra- the Naples Daily News on microfilm from Pups ‘n’ Books program, where kids read tion is required for most programs, which 1927 to 2008. to a dog – or just pet one. Each summer, can fill up fast. Look for printed brochures 5. Downloads. Electronic reading has the library system hosts a program for kids. in the library or visit www.Collierlibrary. become so popular that the Collier library This year’s theme is Build A Better World, org/programs. maintains a collection of audiobooks and where kids will learn about architecture and 3. Movies. Check out the hottest eBooks available for checkout. Create an about building better relationships. The DVDs from the library for free, and keep account and use your library card to access East Naples Branch Library offers different for up to one week! Each library cardholder the offerings and download them to your science-related programs. can check out 10 titles as well as reserve computer or portable device. Two systems 8. Computers. Cardholders can use the them. Are you a Game of Thrones junkie are offered. You can choose checkout lengths computers for surfing the Internet or for other but don’t subscribe to HBO? Every season, of either 14 or 21 days. Zinio allows card- electronic needs. Specific computers are reincluding the latest one, is available. Twice holders to access eMagazines electronically served for any age, while some branches have a month a list of new arrivals is revealed, as well. Download the Zinio app for mobile children’s rooms where computers have access and patrons can place those newly acquired access. to age-appropriate online games. Even middle titles on hold. And recently, the library has 6. Story time. Kids love story time at schoolers have a place reserved just for them added Blu-Ray titles to its collection, on a the Collier libraries. There are three options (varies at each library). Plus, libraries have limited basis. for different ages: Mother Goose Time, ages printers and photocopiers available for a fee. 18

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

9. Live music/performances. Adults and children alike will be entertained with live performances and musical concerts. Offerings vary each month but some previous events were An Historic 1940s Concert, featuring some of America’s greatest popular-music composers; The Cat In The Hat, where an improv troupe presented an adaptation of the classical Dr. Seuss story; and Presidents and Their First Ladies, Dramatically Speaking, which brought James Madison and his wife Dolley Todd to life. The South Regional Library also features a different artist exhibit from January to March. 10. Career center. Need help finding a new job? Then check out the Brainfuse HelpNow center. Cardholders can get employment assistance including access to national and local job search engines, help crafting and critiquing a resume, or learn proven interview techniques for professional and service-related fields. There’s help for Spanish speakers, too.

11. LEAP (library electronic assistant program). Have trouble operating that new tablet, eReader, smartphone, or computer? Knowledgeable high school students provide free tech help at seven library locations. Hours are by appointment only. Call your library for more information. The program is provided by the Friends of the Library of Collier County. 12. Book sales. At least once a year, the library hosts a book sale. If you a member of the Friends of the Library of Collier County, you have a chance for a sneak peek on the members-only preview night. The sale opens to the public the next day and runs four days. The spring sale is March 1-4 at the Naples Regional Library, 650 Central Ave. Preview night is February 28. 13. Genealogy research. The Naples Regional Library has a Genealogy Room, which houses basic and intermediate resources, including books and periodicals. NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

Plus, cardholders also have free access to websites such as and as well as local and national genealogy sites through library computers. Volunteers can help if you need assistance starting your genealogy search. 14. Mail-a-book. Collier County residents who are physically unable to come to the library can take part in the MailA-Book program. If you are homebound due to a disability, you may request items by phone, mail, or email, and those library materials will be mailed in a special bag to your home. You also can get large print books and audiobooks. Patrons may return the items by mail. 15. Learn a language with Mango. Cardholders can set up an online account to learn 72 languages and take specialty courses. There’s an app for mobile devices. 16. Homework help for kids. In Brainfuse (see number 10), kids can access live tutors in math, science, reading, writing, and history, as well as for help with GED and college placement tests. In the 24-Hour Writing Lab, students can submit essays for feedback. Or submit a homework-related question for expert guidance. There is also a multitude of offerings for elementary, middle, and high schoolers. Visit 17.  STEAM. The library hosts programs related to the public-school system’s STEAM program, which stands for science, technology, engineering, arts and math. Various STEAM programs held at different branches have featured robots, Ozobots, snap circuits, Lego, and more. Keep an eye out for these programs in the months to come. 18. Downloadable academic books. Cardholders can download and access eBooks. Conduct a search to see available options or narrow your findings for a more specific search. The database aids in prepping those research papers required for a high school or college course. 19. Meeting rooms. Need a place for a club meeting or to host a group? Cardholders can reserve a room online, for a fee. Or you can use one, if available, for a quiet place to study. At the South Regional Library, there is a large 330-seat meeting room you can reserve. It is equipped with a microphone, speakers, and projector. 20. Staff. Many of the library’s offerings are web-based, but if you are not sure

Collier County Library Branches East Naples 8787 Tamiami Trail E. 239-775-5592 Estates 1266 Golden Gate Blvd. W. 239-455-8088 Everglades City 102 Copeland Ave. N. Everglades City 239-695-2511 Golden Gate 2432 Lucerne Rd. 39-252-4542 Headquarters 2385 Orange Blossom Dr. 239-593-0334 Immokalee 417 N. First St., Immokalee 239-657-2882 Marco Island 210 S. Heathwood Dr. Marco Island 239-394-3272 Naples Regional 650 Central Ave. 239-262-4130 South Regional 8065 Lely Cultural Pkwy. 239-252-7542 Vanderbilt Beach 788 Vanderbilt Beach Rd. 239-597-8444

how to use them, the library staff will teach you. Each month, a Learn eResources @ Your Library program is hosted at the South Regional Library, the Vanderbilt Beach Branch Library, the East Naples Branch Library, and the Naples Regional Library. Bring your device and library staff will help you with all the programs and eResources above. Reservations are not required, but times vary at each location. For more information, visit Leigh Tahirovic is a wife and mother who loves traveling and Civil War History. She moved to Naples in 2001 and began a career in journalism. She is a freelance writer for magazines and newspapers in South Florida.


Growing Citizen Scientists


xposing children to nature, inviting them to inquire about the world around them, and engaging them in the environment helps to develop a conservation ethic and results in children who develop into adults who understand the need to protect natural resources. The Conservancy of Southwest Florida offers a variety of interactive and educational ways for families to learn about the natural treasures that surround us. Environmental literacy should begin at a very young age. Pre-K children (ages 3-5) are beginning to develop critical thinking skills, and it is crucial to provide them with opportunities to explore and learn, make observations, ask questions, and make discoveries about their environment. Additionally, environmental education and connection with nature is important for healthy childhood development and the physical and emotional health of children. The Conservancy offers a variety of educational and fun programs for children of all ages. The Little Explorers programs, held on Thursday mornings at 10 a.m. in the Little Explorer Play Zone at the Conservancy’s Nature Center, provides children (ages 0-5) with opportunities to read, play, 20

and connect with the arts through song, skits, and crafts that have a wildlife and nature focus. Our STEM Learning Adventures programs are curriculum-based programs designed to meet the needs of students from Pre-K through 12th grade. These engaging, hands-on, inquiry-based programs connect real-world environmental research experience with classroom curriculum. The Conservancy believes that students learn by doing and become scientists by studying the environment, collecting data, and making predictions. Schools can bring their students to the Conservancy for an immersive three-hour field trip where students participate in activities such as water quality monitoring in the filter marsh, endangered species studies in the gopher tortoise preserve, or up-close encounters with Florida wildlife in the Dalton Discovery Center. For schools unable to travel, the Conservancy also conducts outreach programs designed to bring wildlife and the environment into the classroom and inspire students through live animals, wildlife artifacts, and experiential learning. The Conservancy also offers fall,

winter, and summer camp programs designed to provide children ages 6-15 with hands-on, nature-filled experiences at the Conservancy Nature Center campus, as well as field trips to local natural areas to be immersed in Florida’s unique wildlife and ecosystems. Campers have the opportunity to come face to face with alligators and other wildlife, understand the importance of water quality by conducting experiments in a working filter marsh, and become a scientist for a day as they learn how Conservancy biologists track pythons, gopher tortoises, and sea turtles as part of conservation efforts.  Today’s children are tomorrow’s conservationists. By connecting children to the natural world, they become inspired to protect it – and carry this with them as they develop into adults. Additionally, exposing children to environmental research also inspires them to value their studies in science and math, and can help encourage them to pursue additional studies – and careers – in STEM disciplines. Contributed By Nicki Dardinger, Director of Education, Conservancy of Southwest Florida. NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017


By Amy Hunter

Advice on Getting Back to Reality, and Being Single on Valentine’s Day

Amy Hunter grew up in the suburbs of Long Island singing Barbara Streisand hits into her hairbrush. When she’s not writing her hilarity fueled parenting memoir as The Outnumbered Mother, she’s a Naples living, butt wiping, soccer team carting, gourmet chef attempting, tennis skirt wearing, nontennis playing, self-proclaimed bad mamma jamma to three sons and a very understanding husband. You can find Amy online at the Q: I haven’t been able to get life back on schedule since winter break ended. I’m married, with two kids, and I’m back in college. I thought once the kids went back to school life would get back to normal but I’m exhausted, not motivated, and wondering how to get through the next semester. Help! Amy: Holy crow, woman. You have a full plate, and then some. Mazel Tov on going back to school. I remember how hard that stuff was when I was too young to appreciate it – can’t imagine it’s easier with all the adult responsibilities piled on top of homework. Best of luck to you. Getting back on schedule with the family after a long break is harder than teaching a chicken taekwondo, which doesn’t sound like a good time. Humans are creatures of habit, and high family

romantic day of the year when I’m the only single person in my home?

dynamics are at their most beneficial when schedules and plans are in place and working daily. The only way to get back to neutral is to make a thorough calendar of your classwork, the children’s responsibilities, and maybe even include housework and meals if you’re feeling overly ambitious. Then, make it happen. Keep coffee and wine on hand and use intermittently until summer break hits and everything is a mess again. You’re welcome. Q: I’m recently divorced and have teenage kids who have boyfriends and girlfriends. How do I handle the most

Amy: While I’m sorry you are no longer “coupled” I commend you for getting to a place that is healthier and better for you and your family. “Well, Amy, how do you know things are better now?” Hmm, I guess I don’t, but everything ends badly, or it wouldn’t end in the first place. Right? With Valentine’s Day rapidly approaching, and your children seem to be in the throes of young love/lust, it’s best that you remind yourself not to project your successes and failures onto your offspring. All parents inadvertently do this. I’ve caught myself guilty of it from time to time, and I think it is worthy to remind ourselves that while we’ve given them life, they are using our gift to live theirs. Ohh and Ahh over the teddy bears and chocolate hearts. Help them make reservations and pool their allowance for a romantic dinner. Teach them about safe choices with their partner and their body, and consent – let’s not forget about that. And after they leave the house, pour yourself an expensive glass of your favorite whatever and take an indulgent bubble bath, or get a mani-pedi or a massage or a girls’ night, and pat yourself on the back for raising well-adjusted kids in a world that needs to be professionally fitted for undergarments, cause most of it is slacking.


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By Karen T. Bartlett


o your ___th birthday (insert age) is coming, and for your present we’re taking you on a special trip. Just us.... and you get to pick where we go! Imagine your pre-teen or teen hearing these magic words: no siblings to share Grandma or Grandpa’s attention, and no annoying parents to cramp their style. Does it get sweeter than that? I first met such a duo in the Galapagos Islands a decade ago. The grandmother had already taken each of her first two grandchildren on personal dream trips for their twelfth birthdays. One was a football weekend, and the other was a shopping trip to New York City. But the youngest dreamed of getting eyeball to eyeball with blue-footed boobies and sweet, playful fur seals in the Galapagos Islands, and so they did. Grandparent bonding trips were still a novel idea back then, and those two giggled, oohed, aahed, and photographed their way through a week of serious bonding. Making life-long memories I don’t have grandchildren but I was lucky enough to do this with my own kids as they were growing up. Not quite as perfect maybe, but 100% one-on-one attention is never a bad thing. The destination can be as close as a spa weekend at a Naples resort, as Galapagos Islands Eco Cruise

2017 is the inaugural season of National Geographic’s new 52-cabin Endeavour II, and they’re offering free airfare from Miami through the end of March and again from August 25 to November 17. The 10-day family expedition visits several islands with top naturalists. Besides getting seriously up-close and personal with sea lions, fur seals, giant tortoises, and more, there are kids-only programs like scavenger hunts and hands-on science activities, capped by a personalized certificates of achievement.

exotic as a cruise through Alaska’s Inside Passage, or as remote as a rainforest in Costa Rica. And it’s so easy! Just connect with the highest rated family-friendly tour operator you can find so all your energy can be spent playing, hugging, and making lifelong memories. Among my alltime favorites is Tortuga Lodge in the Costa Rican rainforest. Costa Rica is dream destination for adventurous kids, and top-ranked Costa Rica Expeditions orchestrates every miniscule detail, from logistics to personalized menus, for you and your lucky grandchild. They handle adventures and accommodations all over Costa Rica, but for families, I just love this one. The architecture is storybook Costa Rican-rustic, complete with wide porches and hammocks. Inside, the adorable décor includes nice linens, modern baths and amenities. There’s even a penthouse suite, if you wish. On property are boardwalks through the rainforest, a cool swimming pool, and trees populated by three-toed sloths, howler monkeys that bellow like elephants, and outrageously colorful dart frogs. Off property, kids can help teach English to local villagers, go on private turtle nesting walks on remote beaches, or kayak on the mysterious Tortuguero River, where otters play and strange basilisk lizards walk on water. The food is yummy, with recipes from native Costa Rican grandmothers. The customized three-day packages are a bargain at $598 to $1070 per person, transportation included. Visit and

Photograph by Karen T. Bartlett

Destination: “Me” Trip With Grandparents


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By Dale Klaus and Reuben Doupé

Family Law Issues for Children With Special Needs

t is commonly believed that parents of children with special needs have a higher rate of divorce then the general public. This premise sounds believable, due to the extra stress that having a special needs child would place upon a couple. Whether or not this premise is accurate, and there are statistical studies to support both sides of this issue, the reality is that all married couples face the possibility of divorce and the presence of a child with special needs will add an element to any divorce case that must be addressed. For purposes of this article, the term “special needs” may include a large number of items for a child; anything from a child diagnosed with the Autism Spectrum Disorder, to a child who may have a non-life threatening ongoing medical condition that requires regular attention. When crafting a parenting plan for any child, it is vital to address all of the child’s current needs and it is even more important to do so if a child already manifests special needs. First, it may be necessary to articulate whether one or both parents will be charged with making the medical or educational decisions for the child. One parent may be more educated on the child’s issues than the other, or one parent may have chosen not to be involved in the child’s decisions. In situations like this, the law allows for Ultimate Decision-Making, which gives one of the parents the right to be the “tie-breaker” in

the event of a disagreement on how to best proceed on the child’s behalf. When crafting a timesharing schedule for a child with special needs, it is important

to consider how the parties will get the child to and from school, therapy, and doctor appointments. It may also be necessary to discuss approved child care providers, to insure that the child is never left with someone who is incapable of providing adequate care. Additionally, the child’s needs may require additional costs for medical or therapeutic treatment. It will be important to address how the expenses will be handled going forward. This starts with addressing health insurance for the child and determining whether any public assistance is available. To the extent the various therapies or medical requirements have to be paid out of pocket, it is important to set forth an agreement as to who will pay the various expenses and

whether the other parent will reimburse some or all of such expenses. These types of expenses are typically addressed over and above the typical monthly child support that is paid. Depending on the child’s prognosis, it may also be necessary to consider whether child support beyond the age of 18 from one or both parents would be required. There is not one single answer on how to address a child’s special needs in divorce. Each case will present unique circumstances and requirements for each child. As with all divorces, it is important to bring all of the necessary information to your counsel and to obtain sound legal advice on how to protect both parties and the child from the potential negative ramifications of a divorce.

DALE KLAUS and REUBEN DOUPÉ are partners at Klaus Doupé, a leading law firm in Naples focusing solely on marital and family law. Visit www.Marital-FamilyLaw. com or call 239-403-9800.

3161 Santa Barbara Blvd., Naples, FL 34116

Open House! Wednesday, March 1 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.


Over the last 43 years, it has been our mission to partner with Christian families in the education and discipleship of their children. We fulfill our mission through biblical integration in all aspects of our programs to teach children to love God, think biblically, and serve others. The PreK - eighth grade program holds dual accreditation from Advanced Ed/SACS and ACSI. Students at NCA are afforded an unparalleled experience through: • Invested, compassionate faculty • Integrated curriculum • Interactive classrooms • Remarkable fine arts and athletic programs Come tour our campus on Wednesday, March 1 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. to watch our students in action and see for yourself why we say at NCA:

“We are more than a school; we’re family!”

For more information, contact Kayla Walling at 239-455-1080 or

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017





NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017



5:30 p.m. It’s a Hearty Party. Make a special valentine for those you love and appreciate. Flowers, candy, and hearts. Ages 3+. Registration required. Located at East Naples Library, 8787 Tamiami Trail East, Naples. Call 239-775-5592 or check


2:30 p.m. Edison Festival of Light Junior Parade. Floats, marching bands, dancers, street performers, clowns, and dignitaries parade their way around the Downtown River District. Located at Fort Myers River District. Call 855-7323836.







8:00 p.m. To Kill a Mockingbird. The timeless American classic comes to vivid life on stage. Through March 8. Located at Florida Repertory Theatre, 2267 Bay Street, Fort Myers. Call 239-332-4488 or visit

4:30 p.m. Black History Month Performance. Students perform music, present readings, and share artwork. Refreshments afterward. All ages. Located at Golden Gate Library, 2432 Lucerne Rd., Naples. Call 239-252-4542 or check



9:00 a.m. Yoga in the Park. Traditional yoga class focuses on breathing, stretching, and postures. Modifiable for all ages and levels of participants. Located at Koreshan State Historic Site, 3800 Corkscrew Rd., Estero. Call 239-992-0311 or check 5


6:00 p.m. Pajama Story Time. Wear your pajamas and bring your favorite teddy bear. Sing songs and tell bedtime stories, then finish with a craft. All ages. Located at Immokalee Branch Library, 417 North First St., Immokalee. Call 239-657-2882 or visit

6:30 p.m. Random Acts of Kindness. We will discuss random acts of kindness and make a few crafts to spread a little sunshine. Ages 6-11 years. Located at Headquarters Library, 2385 Orange Blossom Dr., Naples. Call 239-593-0870 or check





8:30 p.m. Moonlight Guided Canoe Trips. Experience an easy, enjoyable, and educational adventure on the Blackwater River. Space is limited. Located at Collier-Seminole State Park, 20200 Tamiami Trail East, Naples. Call 239-394-3397 for additional information.

5:30 p.m. Sewing Classes for Kids. Sew both by hand and machine. Please bring your own machine, but if you don’t have one, we will provide you with one. Ages 5-13. Located at Etudes de Ballet, 3285 Pine Ridge Rd., Naples.

7:00 p.m. Epilepsy Support Group. Join us for our monthly support group. Located at Greater Naples YMCA, 5450 YMCA Rd., Naples. Call 239-597-3148 or check for additional information.

10:00 a.m. Little Explorers. Explore nature and discover amazing animals through multi-sensory, interactive activities, stories, and animal-themed crafts. Conservancy of SWFL, 1495 Smith Preserve Way, Naples. Call 239-262-0304.





6:30 p.m. Buddy Break. For kids with special needs and their siblings. Every third Friday. Advanced registration required. Located at Naples Seventh-day Adventist Church, 5050 Davis Blvd., Naples. Call 239-213-3351 or check

7:00 p.m. Koreshan Ghost Walk. Experience the lives of the Koreshans first hand as historical figures come “alive” and tell their stories. Located at Koreshan State Historic Site, 3800 Corkscrew Rd., Estero. Call 239-992-0311 or check for additional information. 10


10:00 a.m. Baby Fitness Mommy & Me. Drop-in class every Friday. Instill healthy habits for life in your toddler. $5 per child. Located at Fleischmann Park, 1600 Fleischmann Dr., Naples. Call 239-213-3020 for additional information.




10:00 a.m. Family Fun Day. Learn about the Wonderful World of Wetlands. Located at Conservancy of Southwest Florida Nature Center, 1495 Smith Preserve Way, Naples. Call 239-262-0304 or check www.conservancy. org.


10:00 a.m. STEMtastic Day of Discovery. Experience Science, Technology, Engineering, Math, and the Arts. Located at Harborside Event Center, 1375 Monroe St., Fort Myers. Call 239321-8110 or check www. for additional information.

4:00 p.m. Improv Cafe. Bring your family out to “Little Shop of Improv” on the first Saturday of every month. Located at Center for the Arts of Bonita Springs, 10150 Bonita Beach Rd., Bonita Springs. Call 239-495-8989 or check for additional information.


Best Bets

5:30 p.m. Coloring for Teens. Spend an evening relaxing and coloring with your friends. Refreshments. provided. Ages 1118. Located at Immokalee Branch Library, 417 North First St., Immokalee. Call 239-657-2882 or check

11:00 a.m. 5th Annual Woofstock. A groovy day of peace, love, music, fun, and pet-friendly activities. Pet-related vendors and the Humane Society adoption-mobile. Located at Mercato, 9128 Strada Pl., Naples. Call 239594-9400 or check www.





2:00 p.m. “Upside Down Magic” Discussion. For grades 3-6. Register to discuss this story of magic and friendship, and receive a free copy of the book while supplies last. Located at South County Regional Library, 21100 Three Oaks Pkwy., Estero. Call 239-479-4636 .

2:00 p.m. Author Book Signing. Nerd Camp author Elissa Brent Weissman. Located at Barnes & Noble, 5377 Tamiami Trail North, Naples. Call 239-597-2040 or check

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017



3:30 p.m. Lego Club. Share ideas, be creative, make new friends, and have fun. Bricks provided. Ages 5-11 years. Located at South Regional Library, 8065 Lely Cultural Pkwy., Naples. Call 239252-7542 or visit public. 5:30 p.m. Happy Henna. Learn about different types of temporary tattoos from around the world, then apply one to show off to your friends. Ages 11-17 years. Located at Immokalee Branch Library, 417 North First St., Immokalee. Call 239657-2882 or check public. 23

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5:00 p.m. Sensory Night at C’MON. For children on the autism spectrum and or with other sensory integration disorders. Registration required, as participation is limited. Located at C’mon, 15080 Livingston Rd., Naples. Call 239-514-0084 or check

Call for times. Marjory Stoneman Douglas Festival. Honors the life of the environmental pioneer, author, and champion of theEverglades. Located at Museum of the Everglades, 105 Broadway West, Everglades City. Call 239-695-0008 or check evergladesmuseum. org. 21


6:00 p.m. Zoobilee. Animal encounters, live music, and a chance to win an African safari for two. Located at Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens, 1590 Goodlette-Frank Rd., Naples. Call 239-262-5409 or check for additional information.


12:00 p.m. Blues, Brews, and BBQ. Features an outdoor concert by local blues bands. Enjoy savory BBQ from various vendors, a beer tent, local merchant booths, and more. Located at Ave Maria Town Center, 5076 Annunciation Cr., Ave Maria. Call 239-867-4322.



To submit your event for both our online and print calendars, go to the Calendar at and follow the instructions for inputting event information.

7:30 a.m. Marco Island Farmers Market. Every Wednesday. Located at Veteran’s Park, 901 Park Ave., Marco Island. Call 239-566-2367 or check www. for additional information. 9:00 a.m. Farmer’s Market. Every Wednesday. Located at Whole Foods, 9101 Strada Pl., Naples. Call 239-552-5100 or check 9:00 a.m. Baby Boot Camp at Miromar Outlets. Certified fitness professionals instruct exercise classes for pregnant, post-natal, and ultra-fit moms. Classes are every Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday at MundoMax Playland. Located at Miromar Outlets, 10801 Corkscrew Rd., Estero. Call 239-948-3766 or check 9:30 a.m. Historical Walking Tours. Admission is $10/members or $16/non-members. Includes a 30-minute tour of Historic Palm Cottage and a 90-minute walking tour around the Naples Historic District. Reservations required. Located at 137 12th Avenue South, Naples. Call 239-261-8164 for details. 10:00 a.m. Preschool Story Time. Parents and caregivers encourage independence by waiting nearby in the library. The stories and activities may be longer but just as fun. Located at South County Regional Library, 21100 Three Oaks Pkwy., Estero. Call 239-479-4636. 10:00 a.m. Free Kids’ Crafts. Kids from toddlers to 12 are invited to participate in fun activities. Located at Miromar Outlets, 10801 Corkscrew Rd., Estero. Call 239-948-3766 or check

The deadline for print calendar events is the 12th of the month preceding publication. You can submit events anytime for the online calendar. Note: Please check dates and times before attending events. As Neapolitan Family staff does not enter all calendar data, we cannot guarantee its accuracy.


10:00 a.m. Exploring Coastal Estuaries. Explore the coastal estuaries with a naturalist guided walk. Explore one of the most productive ecosystems in nature and the unique coastal habitats at the Preserve. Located at Barefoot Beach Preserve, 505 Barefoot Beach Blvd., Bonita Springs. Call 239-252-4000 or visit 10:30 a.m. Family Story Time. This program is for the whole family. Located at Bonita Springs Public Library, 26876 Pine Ave., Bonita Springs. For details, call 239-992-0101 or check 5:30 p.m. Sewing Classes for Kids. Every Wednesday. Sew both by hand and machine. Please bring your own machine, but if you don’t have one, we will provide you with one. Ages 5-13. Located at Etudes de Ballet, 3285 Pine Ridge Rd., Naples.

2 THURSDAY 9:00 a.m. FBA Open House. Come any time from 9 a.m. to noon to tour our campus. Located at First Baptist Church Naples, 3000 Orange Blossom Dr., Naples. 10:00 a.m. Toddler Tales. Interactive time for toddlers ages 18-36 months and caregivers includes storytelling, wordplay, fingerplays, and music-making designed to advance pre-reading skills. Registration is required. Located at South County Regional Library, 21100 Three Oaks Pkwy., Estero. Call 239-479-4636. 10:00 a.m. Little Explorers. Feb. 2 and Feb 4. Explore nature and discover amazing animals through multi-sensory, interactive activities, stories, and

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

animal-themed crafts. Ages 18 months to 5 years. Located at Conservancy of SW Florida, 1495 Smith Preserve Way, Naples. Call 239-262-0304 or check www. for details. 11:00 a.m. Free Ave Maria Trolley Tours. Every Tuesday & Thursday. Tours depart every 45 minutes. Located at 5076 Annunciation Cr., Ave Maria. Call 239-867-4322. 1:00 p.m. Goddess Yoga in the Park. This form of yoga incorporates goddess mythology into the physical practice of yoga, allowing participates to embrace and internalize the symbolic nature of each goddess in the practice. Located at Koreshan State Historic Site, 3800 Corkscrew Rd., Naples. Call 239-992-0311 or check www. for additional information. 4:00 p.m. Book Buddies. During one-on-one reading time, “Big Reading Buddies” are paired with “Little Reading Buddies”. Ages 7-17 years. Registration required. Located at Golden Gate Library, 2432 Lucerne Rd., Naples. Call 239-252-4542 or check for additional information.

3 FRIDAY 9:00 a.m. Find it Fridays. Enjoy a scavenger hunt all day. Located at Everglades Wonder Gardens, 27180 Old 41 Rd., Bonita Springs. Call 239-992-2591 or check for additional information. 9:30 a.m. Ellen Allard Concert. Hit songs including “Driving in My Car” and “Birdy Tweet Tweet.” Open to families of preschool-age children. Located at Temple Shalom Preschool, 4630 Pine Ridge Rd., Naples. Call 239-455-3227 or check www. for details. 10:00 a.m. Drop In Baby Fitness Mommy and Me. Every Friday. Instill healthy habits for life in your toddler. $5 per child. Located at Fleischmann Park, 1600 Fleischmann Dr., Naples. Call 239-213-3020 for additional information. 7:00 p.m. Koreshan Ghost Walk. Friday and Saturday, experience the lives of the Koreshans first hand as historical figures come “alive” and tell their stories. Located at Koreshan State Historic Site, 3800 Corkscrew Rd., Estero. Call 239-992-0311 or check for additional information.

4 SATURDAY 7:30 a.m. Third Street South Farmer’s Market. Parking lot behind Tommy Bahama’s. Call 239-434-6533 or check for additional information. 9:00 a.m. Chess Club for K-12. Join the new chess club for students, K-12. For all playing levels. Registration is recommended. Located at Marco Island Branch Library, 210 S. Heathwood Dr. Call 239-394-3272 or check 9:30 a.m. WONDER Kids. Drop in anytime until 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday for fun activities. Located at Naples Botanical Garden, 4820 Bayshore Dr., Naples. Call 239-643-7275 or check for additional information. 10:30 a.m. Science Saturday. A day of fun and exploration to children ages 3-18. Located at Seacrest Country Day School, 7100 Davis Blvd., Naples. 11:00 a.m. Walk the Spectrum for Autism. Entertainment, food trucks, kids’ talent showcase, sensory activities, and more. Located at Estero Community Park, 9200 Corkscrew Palms Blvd., Estero. Call 239- 201-8133 or check 11:00 a.m. Storytime. Every Saturday. Located at Barnes & Noble, 5377 Tamiami Trail North, Naples. Call 239-597-2040 or check for additional information. 2:00 p.m. Alligator Fishing. Every Saturday, For $5 (plus admission), you get a cane pool with a hot dog to feed our 37 gators. Located at Everglades Wonder Gardens, 27180 Old 41 Rd., Bonita Springs. Call 239-992-2591 or check www. for additional information. 2:00 p.m. Candy Bar Creations. We’ll use the library’s candy molds to make some delicious mini chocolate bars along with decorative wrappers. Ages 12-15 years. Registration required. Located at Headquarters Library, 2385 Orange Blossom Dr., Naples. Call 239-593-0870 or check for additional information. 4:00 p.m. Improv Cafe. Bring your family out to “Little Shop of Improv”, the first Saturday of every month. Located at Center for the Arts of Bonita Springs, 10150 Bonita Beach Rd., Bonita Springs. Call 239-495-8989 or check

5 SUNDAY 8:00 a.m. Farmers Market. Our quaint market offers local produce, fresh seafood, local honey handcrafted goods, pickles and olives, and fresh mozzarella cheese. Located at Koreshan State Historic Site, 3800 Corkscrew Rd., Estero. Call 239-992-

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

NEW YEAR, RENEWED HOPE JOIN US SUNDAY AT 10:15 A.M. at the Church of OPEN minds, HELPING Hands, and LOVING Hearts.

Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Naples 6340 Napa Woods Way, Naples Close to 75 & Pine Ridge Road 239.784.4580 or

Naples Preschool Academy Top Early Learning Center

• Indoor And Outdoor Playground • Safe And Secure • Spacious Rooms • VPK Certified • Experienced Staff • Newborn to 5 Years old • Security System 1275 Airport Pulling Road S., Naples

(conveniently located near Collier County Courthouse)

(239) 403-7977


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0311 or check for additional information. 4:00 p.m. Winter Concert. The Naples Philharmonic Youth Orchestra joins the Naples Philharmonic Chorus to perform a variety of classical works. Located at Artis-Naples, 5833 Pelican Bay Blvd., Naples. Call 239-597-1900 or check www.

6 MONDAY 5:30 p.m. Art Classes for Kids. Every Monday, kids will explore and work with different techniques and media. Acrylics on canvases, watercolor, collages, mixed media, etc. Ages 4-12. Located at Etudes de Ballet, 3285 Pine Ridge Rd., Naples.

7 TUESDAY 10:00 a.m. Moms and Tots Storytime with Miss Jessica and Miss Mary Ellen. A toddler favorite, the girls read, sing, dance, and color, creating a fun atmosphere of learning and lots of laughter. All ages welcome. Located at Barnes & Noble, 5377 Tamiami Trail North, Naples. Call 239-597-2040 or check for details. 10:00 a.m. Family Story Time at South County Regional Library. An enjoyable, all-ages storytime for the whole family. Registration required. Located at South County Regional Library, 21100 Three Oaks Pkwy., Estero. Call 239-479-4636. 10:00 a.m. Free Tuesday Morning Nature Talk. Bring your children and learn together how nature can flourish in urban and suburban areas, with the proper care. Located at Naples Preserve, 1690 Tamiami Trail North, Naples. Call 239-261-4290. 3:30 p.m. Meals of Hope Mobile Food Pantry. The Meals of Hope Mobile Pantry will be in the parking lot at the YMCA every Tuesday until 5:30 p.m. Frozen food, fresh produce, and canned goods will all be given away to families in need. Everyone is welcome. Located at Greater Naples YMCA, 5450 YMCA Rd., Naples. Call 239-597-3148 or check for additional information. 4:00 p.m. Valentine’s Party. Join in on the games, crafts, and treats at this “hearty party.” Ages 2-6 years. Registration required. Located at Vanderbilt Beach Library, 788 Vanderbilt Beach Rd., Naples. Call 239-597-8444 or check 4:30 p.m. Black History Month Performance. Celebrate with our students as they perform music, present a program of readings, and share their artwork. There will be refreshments afterward in the craft room. All ages. Registration is not required. Located at Golden Gate Library, 2432 Lucerne Rd., Naples. Call 239-252-4542 or check for additional information. 6:15 p.m. Teen Book Discussion: “I Will Always Write Back”. A series of handwritten letters connected two students in an unlikely friendship. ​Sign up for the book discussion and get a free copy of the book to keep. Located at South County Regional Library, 21100 Three Oaks Pkwy., Estero. Call 239-479-4636.

8 WEDNESDAY 4:00 p.m. LEGO Club at Estates Branch Library. Share ideas, be creative, make new friends, and have fun. Bricks will be provided. Ages 5-11 years. Registration is not required. Located at Estates Branch Library, 1266 Golden Gate Blvd. W., Naples. Call 239-455-8088 or check for additional information. 7:00 p.m. Epilepsy Support Group. Join us for our monthly support group. Located at Greater Naples YMCA, 5450 YMCA Rd., Naples. Call 239-597-3148 or check for additional information. 8:30 p.m. Moonlight Guided Canoe Trips. Feb. 8-9. Paddle into the “Real Florida.” Experience an easy, enjoyable, and educational adventure on the Blackwater River. Space is limited. Located at Collier-Seminole State Park, 20200 Tamiami Trail East, Naples. Call 239-394-3397 for additional information.

9 THURSDAY 3:30 p.m. Lego Club. Join the club and share ideas, be creative, make new friends, and have fun. Bricks will be provided. Ages 5-11 years. Registration is not required. Located at Marco Island Branch Library, 210 S. Heathwood Dr., Marco Island. Call 239-394-3272 or check for additional information. 5:30 p.m. Pups ‘n’ Books. Stop by to read to a dog or just to pet one. Dogs are provided by PAWS Assistance and Therapy Dogs. All ages. Registration is not required. Located at East Naples Library, 8787 Tamiami Trail East, Naples. Call 239-775-5592 or check for additional information.


NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

5:30 p.m. Fish Biology. You’ll learn the differences in the aquatic structure of fish compared to humans. Lots of hands-on activities. Recommended for elementary ages. Registration required. Located at Immokalee Branch Library, 417 North First St., Immokalee. Call 239-657-2882 or check for additional information. 6:30 p.m. Nature’s Beauty DIY. Join us as we whip up some fun creations from Mother Nature. Ages 11-15 years. Located at Headquarters Library, 2385 Orange Blossom Dr., Naples. Call 239-593-0870 or check 7:00 p.m. Teen Book Author Event. Join us as we welcome Neal Shusterman who will be reading from and signing his latest teen fantasy novel Scythe (Arc of a Scythe Series #1). Located at Barnes & Noble, 5377 Tamiami Trail North, Naples. Call 239-597-2040 or check for additional information.

10 FRIDAY 6:00 p.m. IMCP Indoor Movie Night. Come and enjoy a family oriented movie. Popcorn and drinks will be provided. $5. Located at Immokalee Community Park,, 321 North 1st St., Immokalee. Call 239-657-4449 for additional information. 6:00 p.m. Fifth Grade Dance. Tickets on sale two weeks in advance. $10. Located at Max A. Hasse Jr. Community Park, 3390 Golden Gate Pkwy., Naples. Call 239348-7500 or check for additional information. 7:00 p.m. Daddy Daughter/Mother Son Dance. Treat your special child to a semi-formal evening out with Mommy or Daddy. DJ, snacks, and lots of dancing. Located at Vineyards Community Park, 6231 Arbor Rd., Naples. Call 239-3639669 or check for additional information.

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11 SATURDAY 9:00 a.m. Edison Garden Festival. Feb. 11-12. This family event features kid’s activities, including photo opportunities in a Model T Ford with Thomas Edison and Henry Ford, along with learning to make corn husk dolls and origami flowers. Located at Edison & Ford Winter Estates, 2350 McGregor Blvd., Naples. Call 239334-7419 or check for additional information. 10:00 a.m. Asia Fest. Live performances including a Japanese Taiko Drum Group, Chinese Lion Dance, Martial Arts, along with Asian cuisine, children’s games, and activities. Located at North Collier Regional Park, 15000 Livingston Rd., Naples. Call 239-252-4060 or check for additional information. 10:00 a.m. Valentine Workshop. The library will supply everything you need to create beautiful and loving valentines. Ages 2+. Located at South Regional Library, 8065 Lely Cultural Pkwy., Naples. Call 239-252-7542. Also at Marco Island Branch Library, 210 S. Heathwood Dr., Marco Island. Call 239-394-3272 or check 10:00 a.m. STEMtastic Day of Discovery. Provides an exciting atmosphere for children and families to experience Science, Technology, Engineering, Math, and the Arts. Located at Harborside Event Center, 1375 Monroe St., Fort Myers. Call 239-321-8110 or check for additional information. 10:30 a.m. Everglades City Seafood Festival. This free event is for all ages and has fresh seafood, country music, carnival rides, crafts, and vendor booths. Visit for details. 11:00 a.m. Library Festival. Rock climbing wall, Chick-fil-A cow, refreshments, crafts, and activities. Located at Headquarters Library, 2385 Orange Blossom Dr., Naples. Call 239-593-0870 or check for additional information. 3:00 p.m. Valentine’s Creation for Teens and Kids. Make special valentines for friends and family. For ages 5+. Located at Bonita Springs Public Library, 26876 Pine Ave., Bonita Springs. Call 239-992-0101 or check www.library.lee-county. com for more information. 6:30 p.m. Pirate Ball. C’mon’s signature event, this year’s Night at the Museum will feature a pirate theme with live entertainment, food, drinks, and dancing. Located at Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples, 15080 Livingston Rd., Naples. Call 239-514-0084 or check for additional information.

12 SUNDAY 2:30 p.m. Edison Festival of Light Junior Parade. Floats, marching bands, dancers, street performers, clowns, and dignitaries parade their way around the Downtown River District. Located at Fort Myers River District. Call 855-732-3836 for additional information.

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

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13 MONDAY 5:30 p.m. It’s a Hearty Party. Make a special valentine for those you love and appreciate. Flowers, candy, and hearts. Ages 3+. Registration required. Located at East Naples Library, 8787 Tamiami Trail East, Naples. Call 239-775-5592 or check for additional information. 5:30 p.m. Make and Take Valentines. Make a valentine or craft to give to someone special. All ages. Registration is not required. Located at Immokalee Branch Library, 417 North First St., Immokalee. Call 239-657-2882 or check 6:30 p.m. Valentine Fun. Play some valentine games and make unique valentines. Ages 2-6 years. Registration required. Located at Headquarters Library, 2385 Orange Blossom Dr., Naples. Call 239-593-0870 or check for more information.

14 TUESDAY 4:00 p.m. Puppy Love. Show your love to some puppies from Domestic Animal Services (DAS), learn more about what DAS does, then make a Valentine gift for your own dog. Ages 5-11 years. Registration required. Located at East Naples Library, 8787 Tamiami Trail East, Naples. Call 239-775-5592 or check

15 WEDNESDAY 6:30 p.m. Random Acts of Kindness. Let’s prepare for Random Acts of Kindness day by discussing random acts of kindness and making crafts to spread a little sunshine. Ages 6-11 years. Registration required. Located at Headquarters Library, 2385 Orange Blossom Dr., Naples. Call 239-593-0870 or check public.collier-lib. org for more information.

16 THURSDAY 3:30 p.m. Animals Alive: All About Dogs. Tish Roland will bring her dog, Herbie, and talk about respecting dogs and how to care for them. Ages 5+. Registration required. Located at Marco Island Branch Library, 210 S. Heathwood Dr., Marco Island. Call 239-394-3272 or check for additional information. 6:00 p.m. Third Thursday on Third Street South. Live music in the Fleischmann Courtyard. Located at Third Street South, Naples. Call 239-434-6533 or check for additional information. 6:00 p.m. Pajama Story Time. Wear your pajamas and bring your favorite teddy bear. Sing songs and tell bedtime stories, then finish with a craft. All ages. Registration required. Located at Immokalee Branch Library, 417 North First St., Immokalee. Call 239-657-2882 or check for additional information. 7:00 p.m. PFLAG Support Group Meeting. The Naples chapter of PFLAG (Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) meets on the third Thursday of each month. Call 239-513-4568 for location.

17 FRIDAY 6:00 p.m. Barbara Bush Foundation’s Florida Celebration of Reading. Join best-selling authors Chris Gardner, Elin Hilderbrand, Candice Millard, and Laura Numeroff for the 17th annual Florida Celebration of Reading. Located at Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa, 5001 Coconut Rd., Estero. 6:00 p.m. Golden Gate Community Center 3rd-5th Grade Dance. Video dance party. $10. Located at Golden Gate Community Center, 4701 Golden Gate Pkwy., Naples. Call 239-252-4180 or check for additional information. 6:30 p.m. Outdoor Family Movie Night: Ice Age Collision Course. Bring lawn chairs, coolers and blankets. Admission is free, but there is a suggested $10 family donation. Located at Alliance for the Arts, 10091 McGregor Blvd., Fort Myers. Call 239-939-2787 or check for additional information. 6:30 p.m. Buddy Break Respite Program for Kids With Special Needs. Three-hour monthly session of free respite care for children with special needs and their siblings. Every third Friday at Naples Seventh Day Adventist Church. Registration required. Located at Naples Seventh-day Adventist Church, 5050 Davis Blvd., Naples. Call 239-213-3351 or check for additional information.


NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

18 SATURDAY 9:30 a.m. Parenting Simply: Happy Relationships & Psychological Health. A pediatrician father of eight children, writer, and lecturer discusses strategies that parents can use to help their children better understand themselves and others. Located at Bayfront Inn, 1221 Fifth Avenue South, Naples. 10:00 a.m. Free Kids’ Science Cruise. One free children’s Pure Florida cruise with each adult admission of $35. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Reservations required. Located at Tin City, 1200 Fifth Avenue South, Naples. Call 239-262-4200 or check for additional information. 10:00 a.m. Youth Football Combine. A unique opportunity to experience what a professional football player goes through to measure his ability. Located at Vineyards Community Park, 6231 Arbor Rd., Naples. Call 239-363-9669 or check 10:00 a.m. Family Fun Day. Learn about the Wonderful World of Wetlands. Located at Conservancy of Southwest Florida Nature Center, 1495 Smith Preserve Way, Naples. Call 239-262-0304 or check 11:00 a.m. Edison Festival of Light and Grand Parade. The parade celebration includes all-day entertainment and music and is a prime spot for watching the fireworks that kick off the signature event of the season with a bang. Located at Centennial Park, 2000 West First St., Fort Myers. Check 1:00 p.m. Venetian Carnival. An afternoon full of face painting, balloon art, mask decorating, and a carnival-themed photo op. Located at Venetian Village, 4200 Gulf Shore Blvd., Naples. Check for additional information. 1:30 p.m. Pups ‘n’ Books. Read to a dog or just pet one. Due to the popularity of the program, sign in at the children’s desk when you arrive to reserve a space. All ages. Located at Headquarters Library, 2385 Orange Blossom Dr., Naples. Call 239-593-0870 or check for additional information. 3:00 p.m. Ave Maria Warm Winter Wonderland. Activities include horse and carriage rides, inflatables, karaoke, singing performances, and meet-and-greet opportunities will be available with everyone’s favorite Snow Queen and Ice Princess. Located at 5076 Annunciation Circle, Ave Maria. Call 239-867-4322 for details. 3:00 p.m. Penny Olympics. Celebrate President’s Day weekend by completing our penny challenges. Heads or tails, you win. All ages welcome. Registration is not required. Located at Naples Regional Library, 650 Central Ave., Naples. 7:30 p.m. Star Gazing Party. Bring your chairs and enjoy a relaxing night under the stars at Collier-Seminole State Park. Located at Collier-Seminole State Park, 20200 Tamiami Trail East, Naples. Call 239-394-3397 for additional information.

20 MONDAY 2:00 p.m. Book Discussion of “Upside Down Magic” By Sara Mlynowski. For grades 3-6. Join in the discussion of this story of magic, friendship, and learning that it’s okay to be just who you are. Register at the Youth Services Desk and receive a free copy of the book while supplies last. Located at South County Regional Library, 21100 Three Oaks Pkwy., Estero. Call 239-479-4636 for additional information


LITTLE PEOPLE’S SCHOOL • For 2-5 year olds 868 94th Ave. N, Naples 239-597-5064

• Top Rated VPK • Preschool Classes • Summer Camp

We buy & sell gently used kids stuff • Clothing (newborn to size 16), toys, baby furniture, equipment and more. • We pay cash on the spot. • No appointment necessary, clothes must be freshly laundered and brought in a plastic container.

13560 Tamiami Trail N #4, Naples,


Also in: Fort Myers at 239-274-0039 Port Charlotte at 941-764-8121

Call for times. 13th Annual Marjory Stoneman Douglas Festival. Honors the remarkable life of this environmental pioneer, author, and champion of the Everglades. Feb. 21-25. Located at Museum of the Everglades, 105 Broadway West, Everglades City. Call 239-695-0008 or check for additional information. 6:00 p.m. Movies on the Lawn: The Jungle Book. Bring lawn chairs, blankets, and well-behaved pets. No coolers, please. Located at Mercato, 9128 Strada Pl., Naples. Call 239-594-9400 or check

22 WEDNESDAY 3:30 p.m. Lego Club. Join the club and share ideas, be creative, make new friends, and have fun. Bricks will be provided. Ages 5-11 years. Registration is not required. Located at South Regional Library, 8065 Lely Cultural Pkwy., Naples. Call 239252-7542 or check for additional information. 6:00 p.m. Art After Hours. Enjoy free admission to The Baker Museum the last Wednesday of each month, 6-9 p.m. Located at Artis-Naples, 5833 Pelican Bay Blvd., Naples. Call 239-597-1111 or check for additional information.

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017


February Picks L C IN EE OUNTY

23 THURSDAY 4:00 p.m. Makerspace. A place where kids of all ages can have fun while they create,construct, code, learn, and share. Experience robots, electricity, Lego®, and more. Ages 4-14 years. Registration required. Located at East Naples Library, 8787 Tamiami Trail East, Naples. Call 239-775-5592 or check 5:30 p.m. Happy Henna. Come and learn about different types of temporary tattoos from around the world. Ages 11-17 years. Located at Immokalee Branch Library, 417 North First St., Immokalee. Call 239-657-2882 or check

24 FRIDAY 6:00 p.m. Basketball Music Night. Groove to upbeat music while playing basketball. Located at Golden Gate Community Center, 4701 Golden Gate Pkwy., Naples. Call 239-252-4180 or check for additional information. 7:00 p.m. Movie at the Park. Located at North Collier Regional Park, 15000 Livingston Rd., Naples. Call 239-252-4060 or check


Cirque Italia

Naples Fort Myers Greyhound Racing & Poker 10601 Bonita Beach Rd SE, Bonita Springs February 2 - 5 You can purchase tickets through the website or by phone: 941-704-8572

Edison Festival of Light Junior Parade Downtown Fort Myers Sunday, February 12 • 2:30pm 239-334-2999

Edison Festival of Light Grand Parade Downtown Fort Myers Saturday, February 18 • 7pm 239-334-2999

The Harlem Globetrotters

Germain Arena, 11000 Everblades Pkwy, Estero Friday, February 24 • 7 p.m.

A star-studded roster will have fans on the edge of their seats to witness the ball handling wizardry, basketball artistry and one-ofa-kind family entertainment that thrills fans of all ages.. 239-948-7825

Southwest Florida and Lee County Fair Lee Civic Center Grounds, 11831 Bayshore Rd, North Fort Myers February 23 through March 5 239-543-8368


8:00 a.m. Bark on the Ark. Bring your dog aboard Pure Florida’s M/V Edison Explorer for a sightseeing cruise along the Caloosahatchee River. Located at The Marina at Edison Ford, 2360 West First St., Fort Myers. Call 239-919-2965 or check for additional information. 8:00 a.m. MHCP Community Yard Sale. Find yard sale bargains all in one location. If you are interested in reserving a spot to sell used items, please call in advance. Located at Max A. Hasse Jr. Community Park, 3390 Golden Gate Pkwy., Naples. Call 239-348-7500 or check for additional information. 2:00 p.m. The Lego Batman Movie Event. Kids will be called to put their detective skills to the test with themed activities as well as make-and-play moments with Lego bricks/blocks. At each event, kids can collect two limited-edition trading cards (while supplies last). Located at Barnes & Noble, 5377 Tamiami Trail North, Naples. Call 239-597-2040 or check for additional information.

26 SUNDAY 11:00 a.m. 5th Annual Woofstock. A groovy day of peace, love, music, fun, and pet-friendly activities. Pet-related vendors and the Humane Society adoption-mobile filled with furry friends looking for forever homes. Live music. Located at Mercato, 9128 Strada Pl., Naples. Call 239-594-9400 or check

27 MONDAY 5:30 p.m. Coloring for Teens. Love coloring? Come spend an evening relaxing and coloring with your friends! Coloring pages and pencils will be provided. Refreshments also will be available. Ages 11-18 years. Registration required. Located at Immokalee Branch Library, 417 North First St., Immokalee. Call 239-657-2882 or check for additional information.

28 TUESDAY 3:30 p.m. Animals of the Reserve. Join a Rookery Bay naturalist to learn about the different kinds of animal life on the Reserve. Ages 5-11 years. Registration required. Located at Golden Gate Library, 2432 Lucerne Rd., Naples. Call 239-252-4542 or check for additional information. 5:00 p.m. Sensory Night at C’MON. C’mon provides Sensory Nights for children on the autism spectrum or with other sensory integration disorders. Sensory Nights have limited participation in order to minimize crowds, and registration is required. Located at Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples, 15080 Livingston Rd., Naples. Call 239-514-0084 or check for additional information. 6:30 p.m. Party in the Park. Come celebrate First Baptist Academy’s 20th anniversary with music, food and entertainment. Located at Cambier Park, 755 8th Ave. S., Naples. Call 239-213-3058 or check 6:30 p.m. Mardi Gras Celebration. Come enjoy Mardi Gras with stories, a craft, and a treat! Ages 6-11 years. Located at Headquarters Library, 2385 Orange Blossom Dr., Naples. Call 239-593-0870 or check

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

Advice on Testing for Learning Disabilities and Gifted


hether you’ve decided to have your child tested to see if he is eligible for gifted programming or to determine whether he has a learning disability, selecting a clinician to complete the evaluation can seem daunting. One of the most common questions that arises during the search for a clinician is whether to have testing completed by a school psychologist provided by the public school system for free or by a private psychologist for a fee. Although school psychologists and private psychologists typically utilize the same basic testing format, there are some advantages to choosing a private psychologist. To begin, private psychologists typically provide a more thorough and individualized testing experience for your child. In addition to meeting with your child, they also often consult with you and other caregivers, as well as her teachers to form a more substantive interpretation of her performance. They use this information to build a testing battery that will yield the most relevant data to answer the referral question(s) at hand, as well as to identify various factors that may be influencing your child’s academic progress. This battery may include specific personality and executive functioning assessments, in addition to the standard format. School psychologists provided by the school, on the other hand, are often limited by time and resources, may not have access to as large an inventory of tests as some private psychologists, and

are typically not legally permitted to make clinical diagnoses that may be influencing your child’s performance (e.g., ADHD, clinical anxiety, or depression, etc.). Another advantage of utilizing private psychologists is that are often are available to complete evaluations in relatively short periods of time. There is usually a significant wait to be tested by school psychologists. Moreover, if you are interested in gifted testing for your child, he must first complete a screening to even be deemed eligible for a psychological evaluation. Private psychologists, in contrast, do not typically require a preliminary screening before testing and can usually schedule your child pretty quickly. Regardless of why you are choosing to have your child evaluated, hiring a private psychologist significantly increases the odds that your child will receive the most complete and comprehensive assessment possible. Although you may incur some expense, the benefit of gaining insight into your child’s academic strengths and weaknesses, and using that insight to shape her curriculum to maximize her potential is invaluable. Contributed by Dr. Lauren K. Mason, a licensed psychologist and founding director of SpAcuity, a psychological testing center located in Naples.

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Dr. Marilyn C. Sandor, DDS, MS, PA NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

Naples Pediatric Dentistry




Young Stroke Survivor Shares Her Story to Educate Others


t was August 9, 2015, and Taycenter. “When I arrived at rehab, lor Van Netta and her fiance I was able to wheel myself to the Tom Brown were enjoying a bathroom and get in and out of bed Sunday morning walk at Freedom myself, but I couldn’t walk.” Park in Naples. A casual runner, her mind imFighting to walk again mediately went to “dehydration” Thirty days in rehab provided her when she was suddenly slammed with the foundation and by Septemwith a horrible headache after comber 2015, Taylor already had proved pleting five miles. It was so intense one doctor wrong – she was up and that she and Tom decided to head to walking. his place just down the road. “Being told I would be in a By the time they reached the wheelchair for the rest of my life mocar, however, Tom was very contivated me. I needed to know what cerned. Taylor was attempting to I could do. Seeing others in therapy explain how she felt, but her words going through something very similar were slurred and she couldn’t reand watching their progression – that member how to buckle her seat also helped. So does the support I rebelt. When they arrived at his place ceive from other young people online minutes later, Taylor stumbled and who are survivors. Of course, the love fell into the bushes. and support of Tom, my mom, and She was paralyzed. grandparents who were constantly by Taylor Van Netta and her fiance Tom Brown during her Tom immediately called 911 recovery from a stroke. my side and continue to support me and the couple was rushed to NCH as I face new challenges.” Taylor explained. “What I know now is Baker Hospital Downtown, only moments Over time, she developed her own that we need to develop a test that will be away. home-therapy routine that she does daily standard for every newborn so that they can Here, the 23 year old was told the from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., based on a weekly be placed on blood thinners to prevent the unthinkable – she was having a stroke. session with her private therapist. stroke from ever happening.” She also participates in a research study Unfortunately, the cost of not know“It happened so quickly” at FGCU that explores the use of virtual ing about her condition was extensive and “It was all such a shock. It happened reality software with treadmill physical included a decompressive craniotomy, so quickly: from the headache to arriving therapy to determine “whether treadmills where a portion of the right side of Taylor’s at the hospital took less than 15 minutes,” really help or if it’s more efficient to do skull was removed and placed temporarily Taylor said. “I considered myself a healthy real-world walking,” she said. into her abdomen to keep it viable while person. I was 23, exercised, ate well, took Taylor also challenged the FGCU doctors waited for the swelling in her brain care of myself, but that didn’t matter. I was Bioengineering team to help her prepare for to go down. having a stroke.” the Lee County Heart Walk in December It also left her with severe vision Later that day, Taylor, Tom, and her 2016 by developing a virtual walk route for problems (she’s waiting for additional eye mother and grandparents learned why. her to practice on the treadmill. improvement so she can get her driver’s liTaylor was diagnosed with a hereditary Not only did she complete 2.5 miles of cense back) and limited use of her left hand disease called Antiphospholipid Syndrome the 3.1 mile walk, she shared her story with and leg. “I was fortunate it wasn’t worse – I that had caused a blood clot in her brain – the more than 6,000 participants at the didn’t experience any lasting cognitive efone that she had lived with her entire life. event and let the American Heart Associafects or speech impediments,” Taylor said. Adopted as a child, she and her famtion staff know that she was committed to Still, “fortunate” requires a lot of work. ily were unaware of the medical condition participating in the Estero Heart Walk on She remained at NCH for 38 days before which is “really rare, except that it’s more Saturday, February 18, 2017. “I want to transferring to a Lee Health rehabilitation common among young stroke survivors,” complete the full 3.1 miles. When I decided 34

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

to participate in the Lee Walk, I was able to do a half mile,” Taylor explained. “I did 2.5 with an incline and I fully expect to complete the 3.1 mile event in Estero.” While Taylor is slower physically than she was before the stroke, she’s “grateful. This stroke put my life on track. I’m more focused now and I can use this experience to help others – to show survivors of all ages that if I can do it, so can they.” What’s next on her agenda? Staying healthy by keeping up with her medication (blood thinners to prevent another stroke) and therapy, finishing her last two classes at FGCU so that she can graduate with her finance degree in the spring, and that small matter of getting married. In the meantime, she’s raising awareness about the signs and symptoms of stroke. “I hope this helps! I feel like if there's definitely one thing I want to get out to younger people, it’s to know the FAST signs I learned in the hospital,” she said. FAST is an acronym for the critical warning signs of stroke: FACE: drooping, weakness, numbness ARMS: can’t raise/use them equally (numbness, weakness) SPEECH: trouble speaking, slurring words, confusion TIME: It’s critical to respond quickly by calling 911. And, yes, there is an app for that! (Android and iPhone compatible).

You may sign up for both Mondays and Wednesdays!

WOMEN FACE HIGHER RISK OF STROKE NEW GUIDELINE OFFERS WAYS TO LOWER YOUR RISK WOMEN HAVE MORE STROKES THAN MEN, AND STROKE KILLS MORE WOMEN THAN MEN. Talk to your healthcare provider about how to lower your risk, using the below information from the new American Heart Association/American Stroke Association prevention guidelines.

Stroke RISK GOES UP due to …

LOWER YOUR RISK for stroke by…

About 3 out of 10,000 pregnant women have a stroke during pregnancy compared to 2 out of 10,000 young women who are not pregnant.

Pregnant women with very high blood pressure should be treated with safe blood pressure medications.


This is a term for high blood pressure that develops during pregnancy, and it doubles the risk of stroke later in life.

Talk to your healthcare provider about whether you should follow the guideline recommendation of low-dose aspirin starting in the second trimester (week 12) to lower preeclampsia risk.


May double the risk of stroke, especially in women with high blood pressure.

Women should be screened for high blood pressure before taking birth control pills. Women should not smoke, and they should also be aware that smoking and the use of oral contraceptives increases the risk of stroke.


Once thought to lower stroke risk, this in fact increases the risk.

Hormone replacement therapy should not be used to prevent stroke in postmenopausal women.

Strokes are more common in women with migraines with aura who also smoke.

Smokers who have migraines with aura should quit to avoid higher stroke risk.

Quadruples stroke risk and is more common in women than men after age 75.

All women over age 75 should be screened for atrial fibrillation.






About more women than men have a stroke each year.






cause of

cause of



in Men




(from 2010, the most recent year the statistics are available)

Do you know how to identify a stroke and when emergency help is needed? Learn how to spot a stroke F.A.S.T. at ©2014. American Heart Association. DS7723 2/14

Join Taylor at the Estero Heart Walk on Saturday, February 18 at 8:30 a.m. at Estero Community Park and Recreation Center. To register, please go to and click on the Estero location or call 239-495-4901.

Covenant Church of Naples Mom’s Morning Out Providing a loving environment for children while offering mothers and fathers a needed break

Mondays and Wednesdays 9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Ages 2 years to 4 years by January 1

6926 Trail Blvd., Naples, FL


Hurry! Space is limited. Visit NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

1 in 5 WOMEN has a STROKE at some point in her life

Winter 2017 Session 1

Mondays: January 9 - February 13 Wednesdays: January 11 - February 15

Winter 2017 Session 2

Mondays: February 20 - March 27 Wednesdays: February 22 - March 29 You can choose one or both days!


2017 Preschool Guide The BEST preschools for families in Naples! CEDAR MONTESSORI 10904 Winterview Dr. Naples 34109 239-597-7190 Cedar Montessori School was founded in 1984, based on Maria Montessori’s philosophy and natural stages of child development to be a partnership and extension of your home. Cedar Montessori offers infants through kindergarten-age children a fun and nurturing environment to explore and grow individually and independently. The spacious campus, located in a North Naples residential neighborhood, includes two large outdoor play yards, full and part-time sessions, before- and after-care, an optional hot meal program, parent participation, and veteran, highly qualified staff dedicated to your child’s early childhood experience. CHILD’S PATH PRESCHOOL 3144 Santa Barbara Blvd. Naples 34116 239-353-4144 A CCCR Early Childhood Development Center. Child’s Path is a full-service child development center which is open Monday through Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. for children ages 2 to 5. VPK and School Readiness vouchers accepted; partial scholarships available to incomeeligible families. Highly qualified teachers with a combined 130 years of experience provide children with the consistency and skills necessary

for them to flourish, following the Reggio Emilia philosophy of education which promotes childcentered learning in an arts-based environment and inspires a desire for life- long learning. There is an atmosphere of fun, affection, attention, and support balanced with a learning process that prepares them for kindergarten and beyond. Child’s Path’s educational approach encourages children to gain self-confidence through a nurturing environment where they can flourish intellectually, creatively, and socially. CHILDREN’S MONTESSORI 2535 Northbrooke Plaza Dr. Naples 34119 239-593-6668 Children’s Montessori School is a private early childhood preschool program. In our Montessori environment children learn by exploring and discovering concepts with a “hands-on” approach using manipulative equipment and

instruction while also encouraging the student to progress at their own pace. The Montessori Method develops the whole child, not just his intellectual faculties but also his powers of deliberation, initiative, and independent choice. The school was founded in 1998 by owner and director Tracy Taylor, and offers classes for children ages 18 months through kindergarten with VPK integrated into the Extended Primary program. The full school hours are 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. with various schedules available. Summer Enrichment Programs are also offered during the months of June and July. FIRST PRESBYTERIAN PRESCHOOL 250 Sixth St. S. Naples 34102 239-262-8315 First Presbyterian Preschool (FPP), where we are growing the God-given gifts and potential of each child, began caring for the children of the Naples community over 50 years ago. Today, the preschool offers a part-time, half-day program for children ages 18 months to 5 years that follows the same calendar as the Collier County Public Schools. FPP is a certified VPK provider. Our program offers a play-based curriculum that is individualized to meet each child’s needs, as well as small class sizes and low student-toteacher ratios. Faith-based components of our curriculum include holiday activities, weekly Chapel gatherings, and mealtime prayers.

Weekday Preschool and Kindergarten Low Student Ratio Weekly Music and Chapel Programs Full or Part Time Classes for Ages 2 and Up Extended Morning and Afternoon Care 1225 Piper Blvd., Naples, FL 34110 239-594-9557 • 36

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

FREE registration when you bring in this ad!

Our Educated and Dedicated Staff Encourages Creative, Expressive, Hands on Learning • Serving ages 1-5 • Licensed quality early care & education • Reggio Emilia inspired philosophy with a daily focus on the arts & music • Safe learning environment with credentialed teachers • High-quality, experiential, child-centered curriculum • Scholarships available • School Readiness & VPK vouchers accepted • Open Monday-Friday, 7 am–5:30 pm

Your child will receive quality interaction with our low student-teacher ratios and will enjoy our spacious, shaded, fun-filled play area.

Serving children Infant - age 5 VPK Certified

Now Enrolling! Call 239.980.9021

Located in Emmanuel Lutheran 777 Mooring Line Drive, Naples, FL Visit

Full-day, Half-day and partial week schedules available Where your child’s needs are our only priority.

727 108th Ave., Naples • 597-5748 License #C20C07416 •


Preschool VPK Kindergarten




Heavenly Day Preschool Innovative teaching in a loving & nurturing environment

Lic: L10000047664

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

Openings Available 239-438-6281

Small classes with individualized instruction



NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

FUN TIME EARLY CHILDHOOD ACADEMY 102 12th St. N., Naples 34102 239-261-8284 Fun Time Early Childhood Academy empowers children ages 2 to 5 years of age by preparing them for kindergarten through a comprehensive, research-based creative curriculum that features play as a key component. Guided by the Florida School Readiness Performance Standards and Head Start Performance Standards, teachers and volunteers provide an evolving/emergent curriculum and care to 96 children from low-income working families in Collier County. THE GARDEN SCHOOL OF NAPLES 6051 Bayshore Dr., Naples 34112 239-424-9084 The Garden School is an environmentally conscious, academic Montessori preschool for children from 2 to 6 years old. To provide the learning environment that works best for each family, we offer morning, afternoon, and full-day programs. The Garden School is certified by the American Montessori Society, and all our teachers are Montessori-trained and all hold a Child Development Associate credential. Our facility has been intentionally designed as a preschool

learning environment, and is currently under construction on Bayshore Drive, across from Naples Botanical Garden, opening for the school year in August 2017. We offer a strong academic program, balanced with development of selfesteem, compassion, and peaceful conflict resolution. A sense of responsibility and love for our environment and our planet will be nurtured with monthly visits to the Botanical Garden. Apply online to reserve a space for our inaugural class. HEAVENLY DAY PRESCHOOL 7070 Immokalee Rd., Naples 34112 239-438-6281 The programs at Heavenly Day provide Christian-based developmentally appropriate instruction and activities in a motivating and challenging learning environment where best practices in early childhood education are applied. Children ages 2-5 share dynamic, multi-sensory, and integrated learning experiences daily, while individual instruction is given to ensure each child gains skills and learns at their own pace. Focus on strong communication skills fosters independence, efficient learning skills, and self-confidence. A positive behavior approach facilitates successful learning opportunities, appropriate social interactions, and builds respectful relationships. Offering preschool, VPK and kindergarten in small classes with individualized instruction.

LITTLE PEOPLE’S SCHOOL 868 94th Avenue N., Naples 34108 239-597-5064 Little People’s School was founded over 35 years ago by certified elementary teachers who were dedicated to the education of young children. The staff at LPS believes that children learn best when involved physically and intellectually in their learning environment. Students enjoy a small child-to-teacher ratio which allows children to have the optimal opportunity to learn basic concepts in math and literacy through age appropriate, programs of art, science, literature, music, social studies, character development, and of course, play. Part-time, full-time, and VPK programs are available. LITTLE WONDERS PRESCHOOL 777 Moorings Line Dr. Naples 34102 239-980-9021 A CCCR Early Childhood Development Center. Little Wonders is a full service child development center which is open Monday through Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. for children ages 1-5. Enrollments are currently being accepted. Located in Emmanuel Lutheran Church in Naples, Little Wonders offers a highly

NOW ACCEPTING SUMMER VPK 2535 Northbrooke Plaza Dr. Naples, FL 34119 (Across from Super Target)

(239) 593-6668 License # C20CO0018

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017


Providing Care for Infants, Toddlers, Preschool, VPK NOW OFFERING AFTER SCHOOL PROGRAMS K-5th GRADE

Children guided by a balanced curriculum of thirty-eight objectives that incorporates academics, and the individual needs of the child

Educated, compassionate, and skilled teachers

Baby Sign Language used in all infant and toddler classrooms

 

Instilling school preparedness through mathematics, science, literacy that enforces sight words, phonics, letter recognition, and a Kindergarten Readiness Program Parent Trainings and Workshops available! Field trips including: Barnes & Noble, The Artis Naples, The Children’s Museum, Naples Zoo, The Conservancy of SWFL, The Glenview Naples, and the Naples Botanical Gardens Afterschool Program that includes homework time, tutoring, games, crafts, and snacks!

Secure gated entrance, cameras, and a staff training program dedicated to safety

Nationally Recognized Breastfeeding Friendly Child Care Center

Call today to schedule a tour! 239-261-7442 PHONE

Precious Cargo Academy, a Mission of Naples United Church of Christ WEBSITE:


Find Us on Facebook! 40

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

qualified teaching staff. VPK and School Readiness vouchers accepted; partial scholarships available to income-eligible families. Little Wonders follows a Reggio Emilia-inspired approach to learning, which promotes child-centered learning in an arts-based environment and inspires a desire for life- long learning. Little Wonders’ goal is for each child to reach their developmental milestones so that they enter kindergarten ready to learn, full of potential, and interested in connecting to the world around them. MONTESSORI ACADEMY OF NAPLES 2659 Professional Cr., Naples 34119 239-597-2255 Montessori Academy of Naples offers comprehensive Montessori programs for students ages 8-weeks to 15-years old. The time-proven Montessori method is evident in the carefully prepared, reality-based environments that foster independence and self-discipline, and encourage young hands and minds to engage, experiment, and explore. The core of the seasoned and professional staff averages more than 15 years of Montessori classroom experience and all staff maintain their professional credentials. School snacks and lunches include farm-fresh fruits and vegetables courtesy of the school’s student-run organic produce co-op. School hours are from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. including early arrival and after-school programs. VPK and summer programs are also available. NAPLES CHRISTIAN ACADEMY 3161 Santa Barbara Blvd., Naples 34116 239-455-1080 Naples Christian Academy is an independent, non-denominational Christian school that serves children pre-kindergarten to 8th grade. Our preschool program ensures that every child is interested, excited, and engaged in learning,



March 7, 2017 REGISTER ONLINE or call 239-793-1986

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017


A New Montessori Preschool Opening Fall 2017 in East Naples.


G arde n S c ho o l of Naple s

Monte s s or i Ea r ly Educ a ti on

An environmentally-conscious academic preschool program for children aged 2-6.

Accepting applications for enrollment now! • (239) 424-9084 • 6051 bayshore drive, naples 42

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

using a thematic curriculum approach that stresses exploration and creativity while incorporating a broad-based learning experience. Creative activity centers encourage children to explore, discover, and create. The activities encourage problem-solving and enhance socialization, self-concept, and language development. Dedicated, well-trained, and caring teachers strive to ensure that each child experiences success, grows a positive self-image, and acquires a love for learning in a Christian atmosphere. NAPLES YMCA EARLY EDUCATION CENTER 5450 YMCA Rd., Suite 100 Naples 34109 239-963-3778 The Greater Naples YMCA offers a comprehensive curriculum for ages 3 months to 5 years that focuses on building relationships, the learning environment, how children learn, and how teachers and families can work together to strengthen the child’s growth and development, ensuring school readiness. The program is rated in the top 95% in Collier County. The teacher-to-child ratio is lower than state requirements, which al­lows teachers to give more attention to children and help them achieve milestones. We now offer 3 locations, including our new site on the Florida Southwestern State College campus.

PRECIOUS CARGO ACADEMY 5200 Crayton Rd., Naples 34103 239-261-7442 Precious Cargo Academy sees early childhood education as the foundation for lifelong learning. PCA strives to establish opportunities for play, cognitive development, laughter, and promoting social-emotional growth. Through extensive research and adoption of the Creative Curriculum, we offer children the right balance of skills, intellect, and global awareness. The academy embraces the importance of balancing academics with children’s individual needs with the goal of teaching the “whole” child. Precious Cargo is an inclusive school welcoming all families. Teachers are supported by an administration passionate about education, and available to offer support. PRESCHOOL OF THE ARTS 1789 Mandarin Rd., Naples 34102 239-263-2620

Ages 18 months to 5 years old. Hours: 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Extended hours 7:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Two, three, four, and five-day programs. Full- and half-day availability. We focus on the whole child and provide an environment rich in hands-on opportunities for children to grow socially, emotionally, physically, and cognitively. Our multiple award-winning program focuses on providing developmentally appropriate NAPLES PRESCHOOL ACADEMY experiences in math, science, language, and 1275 Airport Pulling Rd. S. literacy concepts as children learn to express Naples 34104 their creativity and ideas while building the skills 239-403-7977 needed for later learning. The diverse, inclusive school is fashioned to expand and stimulate children’s minds and provide them with an Naples Preschool Academy offers a top notch unparalleled first academic experience. Our facility where children learn, explore, and excel while having fun in an extremely safe and secure state-of-the-art facility provides an ideal space environment. The Academy offers trained staff, to nurture a warm community with a young and ample room, and state-of-the-art new indoor active spirit. As the only certified Eco-Healthy and outdoor playgrounds. The school is VPK preschool in Naples, our school offers healthy certified and accepts School children. 1 2/18/13 snacks and is aAM nut-free Offering music, CEDR 1003 NeaFamily 1-4Readiness pg Horiz.4_Layout 9:45 Pagefacility. 1

I love my

Empowering and inspiring children to reach their potential with: - Programs for 6 months to 6 years of age with full or parttime days - Florida VPK programs & Private chef’s delicious full meal program - Residential campus setting with 2-large play yards and much more

Call today for a campus tour: 239-597-7190 e-mail:

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

My Gym, visual, performing and culinary arts, science exploration, yoga, Spanish, gardening, and Shabbat celebrations, Preschool of the Arts has become the conduit through which children emerge as happy, productive, and successful learners. ROYAL PALM ACADEMY 16100 Livingston Rd. Naples 34110 239-594-9888 The mission of Royal Palm Academy is to provide an education of rich academics with Catholic content while teaching the mind, educating the heart, and forming the character of tomorrow’s leaders. From pre-kindergarten three-year-olds to our 8th grade graduating class, we offer our students an advanced curriculum enhanced by foreign language, music and fine arts programs, as well as science and computer labs. The unique family feeling at Royal Palm ensures healthy peer relationships and friendships. We value our families as our greatest asset and treasure the essential connection between home and school. As a private Catholic school, we offer access to the sacraments and many opportunities to grow in spiritual life. We invite you to come and visit our campus, see our students and programs in action, and feel the excitement for yourself. SEACREST COUNTRY DAY SCHOOL 7100 Davis Blvd., Naples 34104 239-793-1986 Seacrest Country Day School, a preschool through 12th grade co-educational, college preparatory independent school in Naples, is how school should be. From the first day of early childhood education to the last day as seniors, our students are engaged in learning, research, problem solving, intellectual exploration, and collaboration. Our Lower School classrooms are places of inquiry and discovery where school the things he sees are not just remembered, they form a part of his soul.

Maria Montessori

inspiring the love of learning since 1984


Voted #1 for educational services and childcare

Ages: 18 months to 5 years old | Hours: 9 am - 3 pm | Extended hours 7:30 am - 5:30 pm Two, three, four and five day programs. Full and half day availability. Celebrating children’s creativity through performing arts, visual arts, culinary arts, gardening, science exploration, music and yoga. Nurturing the values of compassion, respect, tolerance, friendship, community responsibility and character development. Brand new state-of-the-art facility, playground and security system. Professional, dedicated and loving teachers.

Promoting school readiness in literacy, the sciences, and mathematics. Healthy meals, fresh snacks, hot lunches – our delicious and nutritious meals satisfy even the pickiest eaters! Proud to be the only certified Eco-Healthy preschool in Naples. Two sunshades over the playground to provide relief from the Florida sun. Outdoor Artists Corner for children to enjoy the Arts.


Centrally located in the heart of Naples at 1789 Mandarin Road. For more info call 263-2620 or email I

is both fun and challenging. Lower School students benefit from a program of integrated learning that combines reading, writing, science, math, technology, Spanish, music, art, and physical education. A robust after-school program called Seacrest Enrichment Activities helps students explore other interests and talents like robotics, cooking, yoga, and engineering concepts. Community outreach partnerships with local organizations provide hands-on learning opportunities and teach good citizenship. Students also love exploring our campus gardens, Inspiration Lab, Skills Center, and coming together every Friday morning for Flag Ceremony. Seacrest Country Day School fuels intellectual engagement, teaches ownership of the educational experience, cultivates quality of character, and inspires students to lead lives of significance. Small School. Big Experience. SMALL WORLD EARLY LEARNING CENTER 727 108th Avenue N. Naples 34108 239-597-5748 It is the philosophy of Small World that early childhood be a time of fun, warmth, exploring, and discovery. Preschool children are creative and enthusiastic learners. The staff strives to


nurture and encourage these qualities. We offer an atmosphere that promotes social, emotional, physical and intellectual growth, and development of the child as a whole. The learning process is approached through an emergent curriculum education, which emphasizes the interests of the child. We offer programs for children 6-weeks to 5-years old. Small World is VPK certified, offering full-day, half-day, and partial-week programs. TEMPLE SHALOM PRESCHOOL 4630 Pine Ridge Rd. Naples 34116 239-455-3227 Temple Shalom Preschool has been distinguished for many years as a top preschool in Naples. Programs are offered for children ages birth to age 5 and are top-quality, dedicated to preparing a firm foundation for students entering kindergarten and successive school years. Beginning with its “Baby and Me” and “Mommy, Me, and More” programs, children begin their formative years in a safe, wholesome, academically challenging environment, conducive to promoting self-esteem, confidence, and individuality. Its dedicated and well-trained staff provides a caring and loving atmosphere in which each child flourishes and grows to meet

his or her full potential. Enrichments in science, art, technology, STEM, storytelling, puppetry, drama, gardening/nutrition, music, fitness, and foreign language are offered. VANDERBILT LEARNING CENTER 1225 Piper Blvd. Naples 34110 239-594-9557 We believe that young children develop their abilities best in a warm, caring, and loving atmosphere. We believe that each child differs from all other children in many respects, and each age has its own special needs and characteristics. Stages of development follow one another in an orderly progression, but this progression moves forward at different rates for different children. Vanderbilt Presbyterian Childcare & Learning Center allows for the individuality of each child in order to build positive attitudes toward self, others, and learning. We strive to provide an enriching program in a Christian setting to all children, regardless of race, religion, creed, or national origin. Your child’s physical, emotional, intellectual, and social wellbeing is of utmost importance to us. Weekday preschool and kindergarten. Full- and part-time classes available for ages 2 and up. Extended morning and afternoon care available. NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

Naples’ Catholic Schools Combine Academics With Community Service


atholic school graduates demonstrate higher academic achievement, earn higher wages, are more likely to graduate from college, and are more civically engaged than their public school peers, according to the Alliance of Catholic Educators at the University of Notre Dame. That emphasis on community service is evident among Catholic schools here in Naples. Part of any Catholic school’s culture is to teach students to make a difference. Students from every grade level are required to undertake specified service projects. Even in the summer months, these students can be found around Naples – and around the world – feeding the poor, building shelters, and ministering to people in need. The Naples-area Catholic schools include three pre-kindergarten through 8th grade schools: St. Ann, St. Elizabeth Seton, and Royal Palm Academy; and one high school, St. John Neumann Catholic High School, established in 1980. Nearby in the town of Ave Maria also stand Rhodora J. Donahue Academy of Ave Maria, which offers a K-12 education, and Ave Maria University. The 1620% of the student body at these schools that are not Catholic also participate in the Masses, classes, and volunteerism that strengthen their diplomas as they apply to college. Last summer, four Neumann seniors received scholarships from the Naples Council on World Affairs ( to

Live, Learn, Lead

study cultural needs. They travelled to Chile, Easter Island, Ecuador, and Uruguay. “Even though our group was completely out of its comfort zone, it was an amazing experience where we grew closer, both as a group and with nature,” recalled student Allison Minker, who went to Ecuador. Another senior ventured to Peru with Wellfit Girls Institute where she built guard walls around a school so that more children in the surrounding community could safely attend. Other Neumann seniors explored careers where they might eventually help better our own nation. One explored engineering at the University of Notre Dame and Brown University; another studied at Duke University; and Matthew DeSantis attended the West Point Summer Leaders Experience, earning its Certificate of Excellence Award in Mathematics. DeSantis has accepted an offer to attend the United States Naval Academy after graduation. Two other Neumann seniors attended World Youth Day in Krakow, Poland last summer. “The journey to meet the Pope was both exhilarating and amazing,” student Joseph Wilton said. This focus on service is equally important in the Catholic elementary and middle schools whose students are often collecting goods for the local soup kitchens, visiting nursing homes to cheer and encourage the elderly, and raising funds to send to Catholic schools in poor countries like Haiti.

St. John Neumann Catholic High School Strength. Purpose. Faith.

Uncommon Education = Extraordinary Results Providing the Best in Private Catholic Education for Grades PreK through 8th

Royal Palm Academy

239.594.9888 | 16100 Livingston Road | Naples | Florida 34110 Accredited by: Florida Kindergarten Council, Florida Council of Independent Schools, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, National Association for Private Catholic Independent Schools, Member of Council for American Private Education. Royal Palm Academy admits students regardless of race, color, national, or ethnic origin. Royal Palm Academy is a non-profit corporation.

NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

-Exceptional academics -100% college placement -Athletics that teach character To apply or schedule a campus tour, call Betsi Jones at 239-455-3044, ext. 201 or go to 3000 53rd Street SW, Naples FL 34116



Bringing Solutions into Focus Psychological Testing for Gifted, Learning Disorders & ADHD

Lauren K. Mason, Ph.D. Licensed Psychologist 239-307-0886


Masters Degree CPR, First Aid Certified Clean driving and FBI record Day/Evening/Overnight 239-631-3041

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Group/Private Your Pool or Mine Infant - Adult Over 30 yrs Experience Reasonable Rates Certified & Insured

is happy to introduce a complete

Children’s Birthday


239-465-8602 Naples only Mother/Daughter team!

ABC Swim School

We will furnish:

18 Holes of Golf Plates, forks, napkins & candles Tables & Chairs Drinks: Coke, Sprite, etc.

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Ages 18 months to adult & senior Currently teaching all styles of dance in Vineyards Community Park

Join Us at Our New Location in February at 11965 Collier Blvd. Suite #9 (Collier Plaza)

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Summer Camp! List your summer camp, summer activity for school-aged kids, or after-school activity for FREE in the CCPS 2017 Spring Activities Guide. Visit


We use the BrainDance method in all of our classes. 2016 Winter

Activities Guide

Grandparent Alert! Get this book before the grandchildren arrive. It’s the best activity planning guide ever, & you’ll amaze them with your coolness! Available at bookstores, children’s stores, and gift shops. Or visit 46

Academics • After-School Programs • The Arts • Clubs & Organizations • Community Resources Personal Development • Special Needs Programs • Sports • Support Groups & Counseling


Winter 2016 CCPS Directory.indd 1


11/22/16 9:19 PM

For advertising opportunities, contact Stacy Nicolau at or 239-370-5333. NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017

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Programs are twice a week!

Pre-K Programs: Thursdays & Saturdays 10 AM (Most enjoyed by children 5 and younger)

FEBRUARY 2 & 4 Tap the Magic Tree FEBRUARY 16 & 18 E is for Everglades MARCH 9 & 11 Daylight Starlight Wildlife

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MARCH 23 & 25 I Don’t Want to be a Frog Non-members: FREE with Nature Center admission. Visit 48 NEAPOLITANfamily • February 2017 1495 Smith Preserve Way x Naples, Florida 34102 x 239.262.0304 x

Neapolitan Family Magazine February 2017  

The complete parenting and family resource devoted to Naples, Marco Island, Estero and Bonita Springs.