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Resolutions: Half made ‘em, some already broke them, but all resolve to return

January 4, 2024
By Garland Pollard

As crowds thronged through Boca Grande on New Year’s Day, there was a festive tone, as the weather had broken and hit somewhere around 72, depending on where you were.

While optimism for the New Year was present, not everyone actually made resolutions. In a heavily unscientific poll along Park Avenue, about half of the respondents polled on the street had actually made resolutions, and the other half had just not gotten around to it.

Debbie and Rob, heading west on Park Avenue, said that they had made resolutions. Debbie said it was to “drink less, but I already broke it.”  Rob paused and said he would “live more in the moment.” He followed with the obligatory resolution “to not make any more resolutions.”

Bethany Beaumont and Elijah Jackson were out in a golf cart with friends and newlyweds Brett and Romney Mantecon. Down from Orlando, they were savoring some of the memories from the Mantecon’s wedding, which had been at The Gasparilla Inn back in November.

They each had resolutions.

Elijah said he would would like to be more consistent in all things, while Bethany would in general try to be more healthy. Romney Mantecon said that she would “think more positively,” while husband Brett resolved to “cherish the little things.”

We asked if in the wake of the wedding, there would be any money left to enjoy the new year. They said it was worth every cent.

Julia Schwartz, Wes Casey, Allie Bashaw and Liz Forsling were all in front of the the Pink Pony parking lot with a family group that included assorted members from California, Idaho, South Carolina, New Hampshire and Pennsylvania. They had no particular resolutions, but were just happy to be there, and present.

Mother and daughter Victoria and Yasmin Williams of England were in Boca Grande visiting. They having been coming to Boca Grande for two weeks for the last 15 years from Devon and Surrey. They had a rather intricate set of resolutions, with the assistance of writer and podcaster Jon Acuff, who is just out with the book “The Future Belongs to Finishers.” His podcasts have a worldwide following; one of his themes is “All it takes is a goal.” Inspired and having fun, they said that there were a number of ways of goal setting,: There were little goals, medium goals and guaranteed goals. In January, they would be “road-testing goals.” Acuff also encourages “adapting” the goal, in order to ensure some progress and personal improvement.

“You don’t fail,” said Victoria, who has just started a travel and cooking website,

The Acuff advice might have worked already, as he hosted a podcast on the secret of New Year’s resolutions, namely to start the search for a goal in the fall, well before December.

Already, Victoria had walked the length of the island, which she realized meant that she would also have to walk all the way back. That was in preparation for a “charity trek” coming up in England.

The Conlons at the Old Theatre Mall in Boca Grande

Orla Conlon was sitting in front of the old theater building with her son, Eoghan, a student at the University of Illinois. Originally from Ireland but now in the U.S., they come to Boca Grande each Christmas, part of a family tradition.

Éoghan had taken an inspiration from his father, and his resolution was to write something in a journal every day. He added to that as well, as he was going to “try to eat a meal with someone new every day.”

Meanwhile, mother Orla laughed, and said that her resolutions seemed “all vanity” this year.

One resolution they would certainly keep was to come back again to Boca Grande.