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Pine Island reunion set for July 10

By Staff | Jul 3, 2010

Barbara Howard is putting out a siren-like call to anyone who has ever lived on Pine Island; she wants people to know it’s time to come home, catch up, and see old friends.
Saturday, July 10, marks the annual “Walk Down Memory Lane Reunion”, an event that Howard said has been around for the better part of two decades. She said the reunion attempts to draw people back to Pine Island, many of whom left the island years ago.
“Not everybody could afford to stay on the island, especially after the net fishing ban,” Howard said. “Commercial fishermen couldn’t make a living like they used to. A lot of people moved to find work, others left to be with family.”
Attendees are encouraged to bring a potluck dish to share.
Howard, a Pine Island “native”, said the island hasn’t changed too much over the years, still retaining the feeling and approach to life that encapsulates the idea of Old Florida.
After the net ban, Howard said a lot of people moved to Cape Coral, and other parts of the country, some far flung, to find work.
She said, too, that people who still live on Pine Island are encouraged to attend, though often they don’t realize the celebration is for everyone.
“I know people who have never come to the reunion because they didn’t realize its for them,” Howard said. “It’s for anybody that has lived on the island and wants to come back, because they’re part of the family.”
Howard said that there’s an old saying on the island that goes, “Once you get Pine Island sand in your shoes, you always come back.”
The reunion is always the first Saturday after the Fourth of July holiday.
The Walk Down Memory Lane Reunion will be held at the Matlacha park in the old fire house.
Doors will open at 9 a.m., and people are expected to eat at noon.
For more information contact Howard at 440-7965.