After almost six inches of rain falling on Sanibel in the previous 24 hours leading up to the morning of March 13, which dawned bright and clear. A traditional part of Zonta’s annual home tour is the welcome that guests receive at the departure point, the Sanibel Community Church, where delicious bite-size morsels of food await, all donated by island restaurants, caterers and supermarkets."/>


After almost six inches of rain falling on Sanibel in the previous 24 hours leading up to the morning of March 13, which dawned bright and clear. A traditional part of Zonta’s annual home tour is the welcome that guests receive at the departure point, the Sanibel Community Church, where delicious bite-size morsels of food await, all donated by island restaurants, caterers and supermarkets."/> Sun shines on fabulous food at Ninth Annual ‘Peek at the Unique’ | News, Sports, Jobs - SANIBEL-CAPTIVA - Island Reporter, Islander and Current
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Sun shines on fabulous food at Ninth Annual ‘Peek at the Unique’

By Staff | Mar 16, 2010

Richard Johnson from Bailey's General Store, center, pictured with event co-chairs Orlene Shimberg and Ruth Wood.

The sun came out, the 70 members of the Zonta Club of Sanibel-Captiva breathed a sigh of relief, and the 9th annual “A Peek at the Unique” was under way.

After almost six inches of rain falling on Sanibel in the previous 24 hours leading up to the morning of March 13, which dawned bright and clear. A traditional part of Zonta’s annual home tour is the welcome that guests receive at the departure point, the Sanibel Community Church, where delicious bite-size morsels of food await, all donated by island restaurants, caterers and supermarkets.

This year saw an innovation suggested by Richard Johnson of Bailey’s General Store: on hand to greet and serve guests were (in addition to the women, most of them Zontians) men, many of them chefs, owners or managers of the contributing establishments.

The response from tour guests was outstanding. Those they met included, in addition to Richard Johnson: Raphael from Ellington’s, Darren from Traders, Chris from the Sanibel Steakhouse, Mark from Timbers and chef Chris from the Island Inn.

The delicious and plentiful contributions ranged from cream cheese crepes with berry sauce to chicken-mango quesadillas, ahi tuna and prime rib satay, and a grilled pineapple shrimp tree. Peekers nibbled too on lobster and chicken salad canaps, quiches, crab-stuffed mushrooms and roasted vegetables.

Vanessa "Queenie" Viglione served her black raspberry and coconut ice cream, two of her most popular flavors.

A surprise from Bailey’s was a “unique” sheet cake with the Peek logo. Other dessert items included fruit, brownies, apple-berry strudel, and lemon shortbread.

“Zonta deeply appreciates the generosity and creativity of our island establishments,” said Cyndy Lorry, who was responsible for procuring the refreshments again this year. “All the food was exceptional and received raves from our 500 tour guests.”

“A Peek at the Unique” annually raises funds to support programs that empower women. Zonta’s many local projects include support for SWFAS, CHR and F.I.S.H., PACE Center for Girls Lee County and several projects that raise awareness on anti-trafficking issues.

The club offers its deep appreciation to the following establishments: Bailey’s General Store, Mermaid Kitchen, Jacaranda, Lighthouse Caf, Il Tesoro, Schnapper’s Hots, Traders, Timbers, Sanibel Steakhouse, Sweet Melissa’s Caf, Queenie’s Ice Cream, Island Inn, Sanibel Caf, ‘Tween Waters Inn, Sanibel Deli and Coffee Factory, Ellington’s, Doc Ford’s and (a new addition this year) Opa Mediterranean Gourmet in Fort Myers.

“We hope all islanders will support these wonderful, community-minded establishments,” commented Peek co-chair Orlene Shimberg. “In this challenging economy, it is wonderful that every year we receive such creative and generous support.”

General Manager Mark Brust from Timbers Restaurant serving some delicious-looking appetizers.

The Zonta Club of Sanibel/Captiva is a service organization of professional women working together to provide hands-on assistance, advocacy and funds to strengthen women’s lives on the islands, in Lee County and around the world through Zonta International. For more information, visit www.zontasancap.com.