The Fort Myers Beach Town Council approved a funding amount of $25,000 to a non-profit organization that exemplifies a positive image on Estero Island.
The recipient Fort Myers Beach Friends of the Arts applied for the requested funding on Oct. 12, 2012, less than one month after the Council established guidelines for any 501(c)3 organization seeking funding for a program project or event.
The Beach Friends of the Arts, led by directors Corky Condon, Mark List and Bud Nocera, was formed in October 2011, when roughly 20 representatives from the Town of Fort Myers Beach, arts groups, business people and community members gathered at Fish Tale Marina to offer many ideas and discuss forming a collective involvement in developing more of an island arts-based society and a place for the talented to perform. Its mission is to facilitate and fund visual and performing arts presentations in the greater Fort Myers Beach area and enhancing economic conditions and the quality of life.
The $25,000 will be used to fund the public relation efforts of the organization.
"We think this is the perfect example of a public and private partnership because we represent most special interest groups," said FMB Friends of the Arts Secretary Bob Layfield. "We feel as though promoting these events will promote a positive image for our community and share the best of what we have to offer others."
The FMB Friends of the Arts has financially supported such notable events that draw people from all over the country and parts of the world as the recently completed Paint The Beach festival and the revived Fort Myers Beach Film Festival. It has also made donations to such organizations as Beach Elementary School, Heights Elementary Foundation, Cypress Lake String Quartet, Beach Arts Co-operative, Beach Haus Productions and the North Fort Myers Steel Drum Band.
Before the Town funds, memberships were the main financial support for the organization. Back in December 2011, the Beach Friends of the Arts reported report two anonymous contributions of $12,000 each to help fund the revitalization of the Fort Myers Beach Film Festival that occurred in April 2012.