The monthly Venice Yacht Club women’s luncheon seemed like a celebration of freedom.

“It’s the first time I’ve been out in three months,” one of the women said. “I was hoping my car would start.”

About 50 women were on hand catching up on family news and celebrating the joy of being with each other. It was an interesting configuring of tables with some only accommodating two or three guests.

The community outreach team from Mote Marine was on hand to present the luncheon program. The group included Pam Siderski, Michael Moore and Michael Crosby.

The luncheon group learned Mote Marine Aquarium is open for business. Its research department is studying 15 different kinds of cancers. They are working on reseeding coral reefs and bringing them back to life.

For Mote Marine the goal is including the community to advance ocean literacy. They focus on community outreach including teachers and students.

Crosby suggested Mother Nature had a chance to breath during the lockdown. He talked about the dangers of plastic in the ocean.

In all, the Venice Yacht Club women’s luncheon and program were perfect.

The doors are wide open

Be sure to stop by the Bill H. Jervey Venice Library. In addition to checking out books, give a hello to the staff working with masks, shields and plexi-glass shields.

Then meander to the Venice Art Center. The Florida Highway Men exhibit will give you an understanding of their work. Check out the virtual and real lectures scheduled for this summer. You must wear a mask. Call 941-485-7136.

Nice to see Venice start to shake the dust off its feet.

One of our best

The special person of this week is Michael Crosby, who was the perfect teacher presenting a program at the women’s luncheon that left everyone who attended more informed and wiser. We’ve all had profs or heard speakers who were so interesting we were sorry when they finished. Crosby was one of those.

During table talk and when asked questions after his presentation, Crosby never dodged, even when asked about red tide. He knew about everything, from the turtles in Venice to the Coral Reef Lazarus effect.

He announced the fabulous Mote Marine Research Center at Benderson Park is planned for a 2024 completion. Mark your calendars. Michael Crosby invited everyone to the opening. See you there.

Fran Valencic is the social columnist with the Venice Gondolier Sun. She welcomes your tips and ideas. Contact her at


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