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CHR announces Manatee Madness fund-raising campaign

By Staff | Sep 16, 2020

CHR committee members Laura DeBruce and Lena Brown and CHR Executive Director Melissa Rice with artists Anita Force-Marshall and Bob Marshall. PHOTO PROVIDED

Community Housing & Resources recently announced the launch of Manatee Madness.

Starting in early December, more than a dozen specially designed manatees — each painted or otherwise enhanced by a local artist — will appear in select locations on Sanibel and Captiva to benefit CHR’s mission to provide affordable housing for individuals working and living on the islands.

The manatees will be on display through March and then auctioned off. Individuals and businesses that sponsor a manatee will be able to choose where to display the manatee, subject to certain city limitations. A map with the sponsored locations will be available for residents and visitors to embark on a self-guided, self-paced tour of the manatees with fun photo opportunities.

“We are thrilled that so many of our renowned and talented local artists are donating their creativity, time and energy to this project,” CHR Executive Director Melissa Rice said. “I’ve heard a few of the ideas so far, and while I can’t reveal anything before the manatees go on display, I can say that Sanibel is going to be graced by some extraordinary works of art.”

The participating artists include Cesar Aguilera, Danielle Branschaud, Cath Branwood, Anita Force-Marshall, Kristina Jackson, Cheryl Logan, Taryn Manning, Bob Marshall, Rena Martinson, Kym Mason, Lacy McClary, Margarethe Miville, Marianne Ravenna, Jim and Patty Sprankle, Joan Tangren-Reynolds, Brian Weaver and Peter Zell.

“Once again, I am moved by the way our community steps up to support CHR and the mission of providing affordable housing on our beautiful sanctuary island,” CHR Board of Directors Chairman Steve Brown said.

Sponsorship opportunities are available at many levels.

“If you are interested in supporting Sanibel’s affordable housing program while having a little fun — in compliance with CDC guidelines, of course — please consider sponsoring Manatee Madness,” Rice said. “We’ve adapted to the times and promise that it will be entertaining, social, artistic and safe for all.”

For more information, contact Melissa Rice at Melissa.rice@sanibelchr.org.