To the editor:
The 77th Annual Sanibel Shell Festival, hosted by the Sanibel-Captiva Shell Club and the Sanibel Community Association, was a great success and the two groups wish to express their appreciation to everyone who supported this annual event.
David Drotleff provided his time and talent to design the beautiful rack cards.
The following generously provided items for the Sanibel Community Association raffle: Judy Dinnick, 'Tween Waters Inn, Congress Jewelers, JoAnne Bedient, Three Crafty Ladies, Ann Pershing, Diane Winder, the Shell Crafters, and Bill Jordan.
The Sanibel-Captiva Shell Club would like to thank the following businesses for making major financial contributions to the Sanibel Shell Show. The Island Inn, where the Shell Show began 77 years ago, became the show's first "Angel Wing" level show sponsor this year. The following businesses are "Heart Cockle" level sponsors: Sealife by Congress, The Timbers Restaurant & Fish Market and Matzaluna, Bailey's General Store, Three Crafty Ladies, and She Sells Sea Shells.
Besides these major sponsors, the following businesses and individuals sponsored the trophies and awards that were given to the winners of the Scientific Division and the Artistic Division competitions of the Shell Show. They include: the Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum, the Weinstein Family, Bonnie Ford, the McGowan Family, the Lesinski Family, Sanibel Seashell Industries, Bank of the Islands, the Neujahr Family, Jerry's Foods, the Clifford Family, Karl Kotasek, The Sea Shell Company, the Sexauer Family, Gene Everson, Casa Ybel Resort, Irene Longley, Ken and Joyce Matthys, Evelyn Spencer, Shalimar Cottages & Motel, Clair Beckmann, Goz Gosselin, The West Wind Inn, Sanibel-Captiva Community Bank, Mary Burton, the Edinburg Family, Donald Dan, the Shellcrafters, Sanibel Community Association, Delaware Museum of Natural History, and the Conchologists of America.
The Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum hosted the Judges' Reception and Awards Ceremony. We thank them for allowing us to use the museum for this event. Again this year, The Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum granted free museum admission to everyone who gave the requested $5 donation to visit the shell show. Nearly 500 people took advantage of this generous offer and visited the museum without charge during the Show. We thank the museum for its generosity.
Thank you to the sixth grade students of the Sanibel School for sharing their knowledge about mollusks at the live shell exhibit.
Thanks to all the volunteers who worked to make the festival a huge success: the Sanibel Community Association Shellcrafters who worked throughout the year preparing for the Shell Festival craft sales; those who sort shells throughout the year so they can be sold in the Shell Tent; the Lions, Rotary, Kiwanis who help with parking and opening the tents each morning; Sanibel Community Association members; all the Sanibel-Captiva Shell Club members, and all the people from the community who volunteered to work during the Shell Festival. The club also thanks nature photographer Melanie Moraga for allowing the use of her Junonia photograph, without charge, for the shell show awards and the shell show booklet.
Thank you to the Chamber of Commerce and the City of Sanibel for their assistance.
The local newspapers provided great coverage with stories and photos before and during the event. A big thank you goes to the community of Sanibel for helping make the 77th Annual Shell Festival a success!
Planning is already underway for next year's shell festival. The dates are March 5-7 at the Sanibel Community House. Plan to come and be amazed!
-Anne Joffe and Joyce Matthys, co-chairs for Sanibel Shell Show; and Tyler and Sue Schoenherr, co-chairs for Sanibel Community Association.