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Etiquette leaflets targeted to Captiva tourists

By Staff | Oct 22, 2014

Reminders are circulating to Captiva visitors who may not understand the rules of beach etiquette.

A two-sided leaflet issued to resorts, hotels and rental agencies ranks the top items that are important to maintaining the care and stewardship of Captiva beaches, according to the agency releasing the card in the last couple of weeks. The Captiva Erosion Prevention District lists nine topics it wishes visitors to abide in the small town considered a top destination in tourism. The agency has jurisdiction of local beach preservation and sand renourishment projects. It operates independently to protect Captiva’s five miles of beaches.

Headed “Important Reminders to Protect Captiva’s Beach,” the 6-by-9 inch glossy checklist offers instructional help “for anyone unfamiliar with our coastal environment,” language in the card notes.

Among the issues listed:

All vehicles are not to be parked or driven on the beach or dune area at any time

Captiva is not a doggie beach

Please fill any holes you may create if digging in the sand

Alcohol, glass containers and fires are prohibited

Avoid shining lights on the beach at night

Walk with care and avoid nesting areas of shorebirds and turtles

The card is a part of a campaign to educate visitors in considering the informal rules of Captiva. The Captiva Community Panel, the agency with oversight of planning and development, has held hearings on renter conduct in recent months. The Panel’s September meeting included rental agencies and disgruntled owners upset with rude visitor behavior that includes loud parties and furniture left on beaches, violations of local etiquette. Sheriff’s deputies in Captiva have stepped up efforts to limit boorish renter complaints. Captiva is more than 50 percent rental units.

The Captiva Erosion Prevention District is distributing some 2,000 beach etiquette cards “to keep our beaches as beautiful as possible,” said Kathy Rooker, the Erosion District’s administrator.