The last month on our calendar holds many holidays and special celebrations, evoking a range of emotions. Laughter and love for some; loneliness and loss for others. Religious celebrations may stir up our faith. Family traditions bring nostalgia. This month, we simultaneously look back on the year we leave behind and look forward to the beginning of a new decade!

For Estero, Dec. 31, 2019, will mark the 5th anniversary of cityhood. Hopefully you, our readers, are as proud of the Village of Estero as we are! This month’s Village Connection takes a look back at highlights from the past year. We are thankful for every citizen who has contributed to the story of success we call “Estero.”Gary-Israel

Continuing the “highlight reel” of 2019, we invite you to enjoy our annual dining review of the most memorable restaurant dishes we sampled this year. The diversity of the dining scene in Southwest Florida continues to grow. We know you will find something to enjoy in this year’s “baker’s dozen’ list of our favorite appetizers, entrees and desserts. Bon Appetit!

Food is always a big part of holiday celebrations, as is wine. To enhance your merrymaking, Angelina’s Sommelier Dinah Leach offers answers to several of the most common questions this time of year. Check out her suggestions for selecting wines appropriate for Christmas dinner, New Year’s Eve and hostess gifts.

Speaking of gifts, we know that finding the perfect gift for that special someone (or someones) on your list can be a real stressor! Crafter extraordinaire Cherie Rodriguez comes to the rescue. Her business, Aerie Lane, can help even the “creatively challenged” make hand-crafted gifts that will wow — and might even bring tears to the eyes of the recipients! Discover what you can create as you read “Hand-Crafted Holidays.”

Another great gift idea might be a cruise! To get inspiration for your next adventure at sea, you may want to check out a new book on the topic: “The Joy of Cruising” written by Dr. Paul Thornton, executive director of Continuing Education at Florida Gulf Coast University. It’s not a guidebook, but rather the chronicles of several prolific cruise goers. Our story on “The Subculture of Serial Cruising” may inspire you to talk to other passengers on your next cruise and see what you can learn!

We hope you also enjoy learning about some outstanding, local achievements from the last quarter of 2019 in a feature we call “Snippets of Success.” Congratulations to all who are included. We are very proud of your accomplishments!

We also include a “Scene on Site” gallery from the patriotic celebration honoring Estero’s veterans that was held last month at Estero Community Park. Additionally, you’ll want to check out the “Happenings” and “Best Bets” full of suggestions for finding festivities to attend this holiday season!

To one and all, on behalf of the Estero Life Magazine staff and our production partners at Presstige Printing, we wish you a very Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, or any other holiday you may celebrate this month. Enjoy the festivities of the season, and have a happy, safe New Year’s Eve!

As always, remember to…

                        Enjoy the Good Life: Estero Life!


Gary Israel, President & Publisher

Estero Life Magazine

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