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New Gasparilla Island magazine on newstands

July 3, 2024
By Drew Stanley

The July/August edition of Gasparilla Island Magazine is out with new feature stories, recipes, shopping and social pages. 

Featured stories include a discussion of our regional water quality by Captain Van Hubbard, highlights from various modern art instillations in Sarasota, a history on housing and architecture in Punta Gorda (excerpt below), a look at nesting season at the Venice Audubon Rookery Park and a perspective on the unique beauty of late summer on the island.

The recipes for this edition are a picnic-themed lobster roll and gazpacho from Newlin’s Mainely Gourmet, and a Malibu Bucket cocktail recipe from Rum Bay at Palm Island Resort.

Our book review for this edition covers local author Susan Hanafee’s upcoming mystery thriller Under the Sand, the newest installment in her series starring amateur sleuth Leslie Elliott. Additionally, we have also highlighted the poem “Midsummer Moon” by Priscilla Kirkpatrick.

Finally, the July/August edition also includes a calendar of events taking place over the next two months, including July 4th festivities, the Farmer’s Market, the Annual Tikifest at Fisherman’s Village and more.

“Historic Houses of Punta Gorda” excerpt by Sheila Evans

In Punta Gorda there are many historic houses that once were homes for workers, including railroad workers, cigar makers and pineapple farmers. Often these houses were small and simple, usually providing shelter for many workers at once. One of these is saved in Punta Gorda’s History Park. Others are sprinkled throughout the several historic sections of the city. In some cases, whole families lived together in small quarters, but they found ways to make it work.

Ventilation and protection from the natural elements was a challenge in the early days of development in Southeast Florida. Fireplaces with chimneys provided heat, while slatted shutters and strategically situated windows allowed for air circulation. Large, decorative porches and verandas, with roofs over them, gave a place for occupants to be outdoors. Roof lines often served to protect the homes from winds that could grow into hurricanes.

Many residents of the area have chosen to protect their homes from prying eyes. They value their privacy. To this end, many have lush gardens and fancy enclosures surrounding their property. Also affecting privacy is the layout of the two communities, which is markedly different.

In Punta Gorda the city is laid out in a traditional grid street system. This gives more exposure to the houses, from a privacy standpoint. In Boca Grande the more loosely structured road system offers more opportunity for natural vegetation to provide privacy. Regardless of the street system, both communities make significant use of walls and enclosures to add to their privacy.