Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Co. was contracted by Manatee County to replenish county beaches in the cities of Bradenton Beach and Holmes Beach. The $18.7 million project took nearly three months, running Dec. 20 to March 3, 2014.
The project required eight miles of pipe, five barges and pumped 1.3 million cubic yards of sand from a borrow site one-mile off the shores of Anna Maria Island.
The beach replenishment project replaced sand naturally diminished by erosion. These photos and a feature article were published in The Islander March 26, 2014.
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Director of Parks and Natural Resources Director Charlie Hunsicker reviews plans with Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Co. project manager.
Bradenton Beach Commissioner Jack Clarke stands on the deck of the dredge barge California.
The cutter is driven by a large pump housed inside the dredge barge.
The barge containing the cutter arm is connected to a barge containing a deck and the anchor.
The cutter is equipped with shovel like teeth, and spins at 35 rotations a second.
The dredge barge California sits anchored off the shore of Egmont Key. The large cutter used for agitating and sucking up sand sits above the water.
Bradenton Beach Police Chief Sam Speciale stands on the deck of the California during a tour of the dredge barge.
Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Co. project manager speaks to city and county officials on the deck of the California.
Large poles dig into the floor of the Gulf of Mexico to anchor the barge during the project.
The deck of the barge.
Equipment sits on the deck of the dredge barge the California.
Pipes lead to a neighboring barge.
Large metal floats are used to run pipe, and raise and lower pipe into the water.
The main pump used to spin the cutter and suck sand from the seafloor occupies the majority of the space in the engine room of the barge.
A “tooth” from the cutter used to agitate sand is nearly two-feet long.
The California is one of five barges anchored in the vicinity of the borrow site. The other barges generate power and provide extra suction to move sand from the borrow site to shore.
Anna Maria, Fla. – There’s an apparent infectious quality about the goodwill expounded by Nelson Mandela — the mention of his name, a quote, a photo, a story. It’s a message of hope, triumph, struggle, and a universal understanding of humanity, past the barriers of language, religion, politics, skin color and national origin.
“It was really, for me, the greatest personality I’ve ever met. To meet him, gave me goose bumps,” said Markus Siegler owner of Beach Fashion Boutique and Anna Maria Island Real Estate and Guest Services in Anna Maria.
Siegler, in November 2012, came to Anna Maria Island from Switzerland, where he was the director of communications for the Fédération Internationale de Football Association, the international governing body of soccer. His position in FIFA sent him around the globe, and he met and shook the hands of world leaders.
“That’s how I met him, as a FIFA executive. I think it was three times we met,” Siegler said.
One of the meetings between Mandela and Siegler was a lunch in Zurich in 2003.
“I knew Mandela would be there. I had read his (auto)biography, ‘Long Walk to Freedom,’ while on holiday in South Africa. So I knew him, not personally, but what he had accomplished,” Siegler said. “I have met multimillion dollar football players, heads of state, kings and queens, and I have never asked anyone for an autograph.”
Mandela wrote in the book, “To Markus, Best wishes, Nelson Mandela” in blue ink. The signed biography is one item Siegler brought with him to the United States from Switzerland.
Mandela was born in 1918 in a small village in South Africa. He became the face and the catalyst for the movement against the apartheid regime in his country. For his role as an activist, Mandela was jailed for 27 years. His confinement, meant to discourage Mandela and his cohorts, only strengthened their resolve for equality and democracy in South Africa.
Siegler is convinced Mandela’s “biggest achievement and the one we have to admire most came after his time in prison when he applied the policy of reconciliation in South Africa.”
“I have fought against white domination and I have fought against black domination,” said Mandela at his 1964 trial as stated in “Nelson Mandela By Himself: The Authorised Book of Quotations.” “I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”
Mandela carried the words he expressed in 1964 through his life in actions, until death on Dec. 5.
“What was so striking was his aura. There was no bitterness. He spent 27 years in prison. (At the lunch) he was open, he was joking. He was funny, he liked to laugh and be spontaneous,” Siegler said.
Mandela was released from prison in 1990. Four years later, at age 76, he became the first black, democratically elected president of South Africa.
After Mandela’s death this month, his coffin was placed in almost the same place he took his oath of office.
CNN said the mourning of his death looked similar to Mandela’s election — people of every color and background gathered at the capitol, singing and carrying signs and banners and wearing shirts displaying Mandela’s portrait.
“I was deeply, deeply impressed. I was lucky to have met him. For me, he is one of the greatest in history and I’m not alone in that,” said Siegler, who followed the news from AMI.
Mandela served one five-year term as president and voluntarily stepped down. He forged a democracy and he took to the grave many firsts for South Africa, as well as a Nobel Peace Prize earned with F.W. de Klerk, South Africa’s last apartheid-era president, for negotiating the end of the apartheid in South Africa.
President Barack Obama spoke at Mandela’s memorial in Johannesburg Dec. 10: “It is hard to eulogize any man — to capture in words not just the facts and the dates that make a life, but the essential truth of a person … How much harder to do so for a giant of history.
He also said, “It took a man like Madiba to free not just the prisoner, but the jailor as well; to show that you must trust others so that they may trust you; to teach that reconciliation is not a matter of ignoring a cruel past, but a means of confronting it with inclusion, generosity and truth. He changed laws, but he also changed hearts.”
This article was originally published in The Islander Dec. 18, 2013.
Fall Fest is Anna Maria Elementary School’s largest fundraiser and community event of the year. The fest brings a costume contest and parade, games, a bake sale and raises money to supplement the school’s budget. Fall Fest is put on by the Parent Teacher Organization. These photos were originally published in the The Islander Oct. 30, 2013.
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Ava Harlan, Payton Harlan and Jeremiah Harlan sip Butter-Beer at the Fall Festival Oct. 26. The siblings came to the party as pink-haired un-dead zombies.
Skylar Hendler and Ella Coney-Jones — zombie brides — exit the haunted house. “It was awesome!” Skylar said. “At the end there’s a scary guy with a shovel,” Ella said.
Fourth-graders Kennedy Bullard and Destin Gullamundi collect prizes in the student costume contest that recognizes one boy and one girl from each class.
AME costumed students march by class from the chamber to school.
The Oct. 26 costume parade kicks off the annual AME Fall Festival that ends at the elementary school with games, prizes, food and refreshments and fun.
Anna Maria Elementary kindergarteners step off in the lead of the costume parade from the Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce, ushered on Gulf Drive by members of the Holmes Beach Police Department to the elementary school.
Kylie Huffman paints a pumpkin with the help of her mom, Cori Huffman.
Jacob Mucci plays “Mrs. Newhall’s Ghost Poop,” a classroom-sponsored game at the festival. For the game, players toss small white balls into a toilet for a prize.
Fifth-grader Sophia Belsito came as “Flo” to AME’s Fall Festival costume contest. “I had no clue what I wanted to be, but I was watching TV and the commercial came on. Everybody loves Flo!” Sophia said.
Gigi Ortwein paints a pumpkin on Anna Kornman at the Fall Festival. Face-painting and other classroom-sponsored booths were set up to raise funds at the event.
Two bouncehouses in the field behind the school keep kids busy at the Oct. 26 Fall Festival.
Parents, students, friends and family survey the baked goods for sale at the AME-PTO annual Fall Festival fundraiser. Alongside the bake sale was a silent auction of items donated by the community.
Three tiers of murderous cupcakes offered for sale Oct. 26 help raise funds for the Parent Teach Organization, along with hundreds of baked goods featured in the first-floor main hallway at Anna Maria Elementary School’s Fall Festival.