Gary Israel

Gary Israel

Would you believe there are residents of the Village of Estero who have never attended any event at Hertz Arena? Yes, there are. I’ve been asking. There are a great many others who still only associate the arena with Florida Everblades hockey. But these games only represent about a third of the more than 120 events at Hertz Arena each year. So, what else is happening in this 25-year-old facility? Find out in this month’s cover story, “Beyond the Blades.” You may be surprised with the variety of activity going on inside Estero’s most recognizable venue.

There’s also “more than meets the eye” happening within the walls of Estero High School. From a distance, the graduating senior class might appear like any other senior class around the country. But our second feature story demonstrates how Estero High grads are offering “hope for the future.” We interviewed five seniors (Sydney Ramsey, Ethan Wilson, Bryce Kronfeldt, Ines Kabbadj and Alexis Martus) and discovered a myriad of activities they have participated in throughout their high school careers. They include leadership roles in a student-founded nonprofit, several team sports (lacrosse, golf, tennis, soccer, volleyball), an Estero rock band music club, aeronautical engineering, the Rotary Interact Club, Best Buddies and more – in addition to the rigorous academics of their Cambridge Diploma program. Enjoy reading about this year’s dynamic graduating class!

And if you really want to talk about “more than meets the eye” experiences, set a date to dine at The Clam Bake. This restaurant’s location in Island Park Shopping Center – sandwiched between a pasta place and another small business – is rather unremarkable, but, WOW, wait until you walk through those doors! From the moment we stepped inside, we were drawn into a cheery, active neighborhood restaurant brimming with laughter, chatter and aromas of a family kitchen. And surprisingly, it’s so expansive we couldn’t even see the far end of the restaurant from the door. Not being too familiar with New England dining, I was taken aback by the amazing culinary experience offered by classic dishes of our nation’s upper East Coast. New Englanders are sure to enjoy this taste of “home” (along with plenty of Red Sox and Patriots memorabilia). This was one of the best changes of pace in dining that we have experienced in nearly 13 years!  Just close your eyes and point to the menu…You can’t go wrong!

What comes to mind when you hear “capital improvement projects?” If you just dozed off, wake up! There’s certainly more than meets the eye in the Village of Estero’s Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) for the upcoming fiscal year. If you’re not sure what a CIP is or why you should care, check out this month’s Village Connection. The CIP includes valuable community improvement projects such as preserving land for public enjoyment, new bicycle and pedestrian paths, traffic flow improvements, street lighting, beautification of roadways, utility extensions and drainage improvements. Estero citizens are invited to attend public hearings on planned projects on Wednesday, June 7, or Wednesday, June 21.

Finally, I’d like to recognize the “more than meets the eye” value of fathers, grandfathers and father figures in our lives. Never underestimate the positive impact your engagement can have in the lives of those you mentor. From all of us at Estero Life Magazine, we wish you a very Happy Father’s Day!


Until next month, remember to…

Enjoy the Good Life: Estero Life!!


Gary Israel, President & Publisher 

Estero Life Magazine


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