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Holiday House of H.O.P.E. Dec. 1-3 at Tarpon Lodge

By Staff | Nov 21, 2011

The Second Annual Holiday House of H.O.P.E. will provide not only a way to help others but also an opportunity to get a jump on holiday shopping and decorating. Hosted by the Historic Tarpon Lodge, 13771 Waterfront Drive, Pine-land, the event will be held Dec. 1, 2 and 3, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.

For a donation of $5 or more, visitors can tour the Lodge with proceeds going to the Beacon of H.O.P.E. and its wide variety of activities and services that benefit Pine Islanders. All donations are tax deductible.

“This is our largest fund-raiser of the year,” said Elsie Stearns, coordinator of the event. “Our board hopes that people will bring their checkbooks and open their hearts.”

Each of the three evenings will include an island author and special entertainment. On Dec. 1, D.L. Havlin will be featured. He is the author of “A Place No One Should Go,” “September on Echo Creek” and “The Hangin’ Oak.” Jazz clarinetist Lanny Lamb will fill the Lodge with the sounds of the holidays.

Mary Kaye Stevens will be on hand Dec. 2 with her books Pine Island and Lee County Islands. She will soon release “Images of Fort Myers Beach.” That evening, the Lodge will ring with the sounds of the Pine Island United Methodist Church Chancel Chimes hand bells.

Mystery author Marty Ambrose will appear on Dec. 3. Her books include “Peril in Paradise,” “Island Intrigue” and “Murder in the Mangroves.” Her new release is “Killer Kool”

The Symphonic Chorale of Southwest Florida will send a contingent of singers to harmonize in seasonal songs. The group will be singing Handel’s “Messiah” at Barbara B. Mann two weeks later under the direction of Timothy McDonnell in collaboration with the Southwest Florida Symphony Orchestra and Ave Maria University so this is a rare opportunity to hear them in a local, informal setting.

Each of the rooms in the Lodge will have a theme. Mel Meo and Cliff Schultheis will have their artwork on display. Nocera Photography will be taking portraits on site. Special items donated to the Beacon of H.O.P.E. will fill a Pine Island Attic room. Pine Bay Gallery will have an eclectic collection of merchandise.

Another room will be designated Pine Island Cares. The Kiwanis will sell the latest version of Tervis Tumblers. From Our Hearts will also have items available for purchase.

The Lodge will be filled with one-of-a-kind treasures. Throughout the premises, Christmas decorations and wreaths created by interior decorator Carol Cassell will be for sale to brighten any home. In addition, 16 local businesses will decorate table top trees to be raffled or auctioned.

Before or after touring the Lodge and stocking up on gifts, visitors can enjoy a gourmet dinner or a cocktail. Dinner reservations are filling rapidly and can be arranged by calling 239-283-3999. Volunteers from the Matlacha-Pine Island Fire Department will help with parking. Overflow parking will be at the Randell Research Center across the street.

Men of Cape Coral Public Safety Calendars will be on sale at the Holiday House of H.O.P.E. for $10. The Cape Coral Public Safety Department includes firemen and police officers that serve the city of Cape Coral. They have each had their own respective calendars for various charities in previous years, but this one will be the first calendar with both police and firefighters. All of the proceeds go to the United Way.

For more information, call (239)283-1618.