Saturday, June 24, 2017


As you know, this is an election year and primary elections will be held on September 12. Save Our Recreation has sent to each of the candidates two questions related to the old golf course property. We will post the responses on our website and will also send them out in future email blasts.

What we ask each of you is to make sure that you are registered to vote and that you actually vote in the primary election. The registration books close 29 days before the election so be sure to register by 5:00 pm August 14.

Voter Registration On-Line

Voter Registration Sites

The Cape Coral office information is:
Cape Coral Branch Office
At Lee County Government Center
1039 SE 9th Ave
Cape Coral
239 LEE-VOTE (239-533-8683)
Monday – Friday
8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

It is truly the duty of all citizens to vote in elections and participate in the great democratic process we have in this country. Particularly when you have items that you care deeply about it is that much more important to vote.  So please follow the information we provide and also look at other sources to make your best informed decision on the candidates and VOTE on September 12.

Friday, June 23, 2017

All Candidate Answers Will be Posted JULY 8

Dear Candidates,

Please find below two questions relative to the former golf course property.  Please email your answers back to me by Wednesday June 21st.  Your answers will be posted on our SOR website, and sent to our Save Our Recreation group by email blast.

Thank you for your time.


Mary Neilson
Save Our Recreation, Inc.

Question one:  Will you vote "No" on the transmittal to the state of the future land-use map amendment for the golf course property that would change it from Parks and Recreation to Single-family Residential that would allow for the DR Horton development called The Palm's?

Question two:  If you do not support the transmittal to the state of the future land-use change, what are your thoughts on what should happen with the golf course property?

Monday, June 19, 2017

New Yard Signs available TODAY!

YARD SIGNS available - NO Donation required.
'but would be accepted'

Please call Mary at 239-243-5989 or email

Friday, June 16, 2017

Councilmember Cosden to host Town Hall meeting on Monday

Town Hall Meeting  This Monday June 19 at 4:30 at City Council Chambers.  The meeting is open to the public to discuss any city issues or concerns.

Councilmember Jessica Cosden District 7


Important Request!  The Cape Coral Breeze has a one question opinion poll on the golf course.  We want to make sure all of you are aware of it and are responding to make sure our voices are heard.  It is important that we let everyone know how important it is to support keeping this as Park and Recreation.  Please go to this link: 

Once you have taken the poll, please forward this message on to your family, friends and neighbors who are interested in the golf course.

Also, our questions on the golf course have been submitted to all of the council and mayoral candidates.  Responses are due by June 21 after which we will post the responses here.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

P & Z meeting Pics

Passionate Cape Coral residents 

Save Our Recreation Attorney Ralf Brookes

Save Our Recreation Consultant Max Forgey ~ Zoning Technologies, Inc.
Save Our Recreation Speaker ~ Cape Coral Yacht Club area resident Gary Eidson
Carolyn Conant-Adair Bike/Ped Speaker ~ SW Cape Coral area resident 
Original Sale Map Brochure

Original Sales Map Brochure

Wednesday, June 07, 2017


Planning & Zoning Commission voted to DENY applicant today

Today was a great day for Save Our Recreation and all of its supporters.  We want to thank you for all your efforts as the Planning and Zoning commission today voted 5 to 2 to deny the future land-use change.  Although the journey is not over as the City Council will likely vote on this on August 7, the fact that we prevailed today is certainly a great step in the right direction.

None of this would've been possible without all of the wonderful support from all of you who value this great space and wish to preserve it for the use of generations to come.  You made this a community wide issue and our leaders are hearing your voice.

We will continue to keep you informed as we move forward and seek your assistance where needed.
Thanks again from the bottom of our hearts.

Barth and Mary

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

P & Z Meeting. Working tomorrow morning? You can still help!

If you cannot attend, please email a VERY short and to the point message to the Planning and Zoning commission that you urge them to recommend a NO vote on the proposed Future Land Use Map Amendment.  

Their email address is

Staff will enter the email 'count' recommending a 'NO' vote into the record.  

Monday, June 05, 2017

P & Z Meeting Reminder & How Out of Towners Can Help


The Planning and Zoning Commission meeting is this Wednesday, June 7, at 9:00 AM in council chambers.  Please come with your sign and wear your green shirt.  If you don't have a sign we will have some for you there.  If you can come at 8:30 and wait outside and display your signs that would be great.

Bring a friend or two with and get the word out to as many others as well.  We want a great turnout.

If you cannot attend, email a VERY short and to the point message to the Planning and Zoning commission that you urge them to recommend a NO vote on the proposed Future Land Use Map Amendment.  Their email address is

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

URGENT CALL TO ACTION Attend P & Z meeting Wednesday June 7 at 9:00 AM

Call to action!!  We need you at the June 7 Planning and Zoning Commission hearing where the Future Land Use Map Amendment that requests to change the old golf course from Parks and Recreation to Single Family Residential is on the agenda. The meeting is at 9:00 am in City Council Chambers. They will likely make a recommendation to the City Council at this meeting and we want them to know how strong the opposition is to this change.

We urge you to arrive by 8:30 and bring your yard signs, signs from our rally this summer, or make your own. Signs are for outside only, so when you go in leave your signs in your car.  We will try to have some extra signs available. For signs please contact Alan Jones at 860-670-4862.   Wear your green Save Our Recreation t-shirts. If you don't have one wear any green shirt. For T Shirts contact Mary Neilson at 239-243-5989. The public can speak at the meeting. SOR representatives (including our attorney and land use expert) will be speaking and you can as well. Please, be respectful, factual and constructive with any signs you bring or comments you may make. We always want to be a positive and constructive voice in the process. Also, please tell your family, friends and neighbors about this and encourage them to attend. Try to bring two people with you.  Let’s have a great show of support!

We particularly encourage supporters from others parts of the Cape to attend and let the Commission know this is more than just a neighborhood issue. This is a chance to save a special property than can be enjoyed by the community for generations if the current land use is preserved. If you plan to speak, please let either Mary ( or 239-243-5989) or Barth ( or 920-621-6097) know as we are trying to coordinate as best we can so we cover different points and we want to be sure we have at least several speakers from outside the immediate neighborhood.

The notice letter the City sent out  to neighbors can be found on our website. This is the first step in the process. The most critical will be the City Council meeting where they vote on whether to transmit the proposed land use map amendment to the state. The current plan is for this hearing to be held at the August 7 City Council meeting. Please mark your calendar for that date!!  We need a huge turnout then. We will update you as we get closer to that hearing or if this timing changes.

Lastly, City Planning Department staff has recommended approval of the land use map change. This is very disappointing. We plan to refute some of their points at the June 7 hearing.

Planning Division Case Report Future Land Use Map Amendment

PDF Attached: LU16-0013_Staff_Report_Final.pdf

Notice to Surrounding Property Owners

Sunday, May 07, 2017

Update & News Press survey

THE FIRST IS IMPORTANT AND REQUIRES YOUR IMMEDIATE ACTION.  The News Press has a survey about the golf course. Click either of the following links to take the survey.  The first link will take you directly to the survey.  The second will require you navigate through The News Press a bit.

Second, it sounds like DR Horton is not interested in the land swap. We are not sure if that is just their negotiating stance, but if true it's a shame as it is a great way forward that provides something of benefit to all parties. Taking the future land use change request to a vote will guarantee there are some winners and some losers. That's a good point for you to raise when people ask about the land swap. 

Last, elections are coming up later this year for the mayor and three council positions. Richard Leon who represents the golf course district has not been positive in his pubic comments about whether to preserve the Parks and Rec status. There are two candidates running against him. We will be sure to try to get their opinions on the golf course before the election and will hopefully be meeting with each of them to explain our position. 

Sunday, April 09, 2017

T Shirts & Yard Signs are in!

Call or text Mary at 239-243-5989 or email

Councilman Richard Leon Town Hall TOMORROW at 4

District 4 councilmember Richard Leon is hosting a Town Hall type meeting at City Hall in Council Chambers, tomorrow (Monday) at 4:00.  Please join your neighbors and ask questions.  Elections are just around the corner.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Proposed land swap and $13.2 million land purchase, Cape Coral Breeze Letter to the Editor

To the editor:
The proposed land swap would go a long way to substantiate the city's claim that it spent $13.2 million dollars on land, in 2012, to trade and use for future city projects.
The City of Cape Coral owns 1500+ parcels of land. Of those parcels, over 1100 are vacant. The city of Cape Coral cannot legally hold or purchase property for investment purposes. That fact is not subjective; it is part of our Constitution. The city is beginning to appear as though they are real estate speculators.
We need to be reminded that we are not collecting property taxes, fire assessments, storm water, mowing or utility fees on those 1100+ properties. That equates to a tremendous amount of lost revenue annually for the city. In fact, millions of dollars, in potential revenue, has been lost on the 491 parcels that the city acquired in 2012 alone.
Mr. Szerlag has an opportunity to substantiate the city's claims regarding the $13.2 million land purchase, by trading some of the city's property for green space. No one disputes that the city needs green space and that the Old Golf Course would make a great addition to the city's resources. It is a rare occurrence when the city staff, city manager, city council and mayor all agree on a topic. It would be refreshing to see all parties involved move in unison to do something positive for the future of Cape Coral, while honoring the city's past. Please remember that Cape Coral "wasn't born yesterday."
I understand the historic relevance of the Old Country Club and Golf Course property because I was here when the city was being formed. My family moved to Cape Coral in 1970 when I was a young child. To put that into perspective, there were no traffic lights in Cape Coral when my family arrived 47 years ago. It wasn't necessarily "better" back then, it was just "different." Cape Coral is my home town and I am proud of her progress and willingness to welcome new residents from all over the country. It was what the founders, of this city, intended from the very beginning. Every new resident that finds their way to Cape Coral comes from their own "home town." Most of those people have sentimental attachments to their roots. Towns and cities all across America have places of significance or sacred landmarks that define their existence. That is what the old Country Club and Golf Course Property means to Cape Coral. It's where the city founders played, prayed and plotted. It's where they breathed life into this city. In many respects, Cape Coral was born on that property. It deserves our respect and preservation. It's not about walking trails, traffic or zoning. It's about remembering where we came from and acknowledging that some things can't be factored into an "appraisal."
I implore D.R. Horton to take the high road and to demonstrate that Cape Coral is more than just a modern day "Pottersville." I beg of both new and old residents to encourage our leaders to respect the foundation of our beautiful city and to honor her past.
Wendy Blake

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Save Our Recreation *RALLY* Tuesday, March 21st 3:45 Do NOT park in the medians!!!!!!!

Hello fellow volunteers.  Believers.  Are you ready to Rally?

Inviting you to join our Citizens' Rally 
this Tuesday from 4:30 to 5:30 pm 
to “walk the talk” to Save Our Recreation.
Date; March 21.
Check-in time: 3:45 pm.  
Location: Lot near Century Link at 4001 Palm Tree Blvd.  
DO NOT park in the medians.. (For the safety of pets, please leave them at home.) 

Walkers with signs will walk on the sidewalk south on Palm Tree from 4:30 to 5:30 pm..     
Rally signs will be available.  Or, you may use your yard sign. 
Signs will show support for preserving the Golf Club property as a Parks and Recreation amenity for all of Cape Coral – just like the Yacht Club.  

As you know, SOR is a not-for-profit corporation organized to preserve and protect from housing development the only large remaining green space in Cape Coral - 175 acres - for generations to come.

Can you make it?  Would love to see you.

With thanks,
"Our generation plants the trees, another gets the shade."  
Anne Carney, volunteer
708-363-5413 (text friendly)
4005 Palm Tree Blvd., 402
Cape Coral 33904
Save Our Recreation (501c3 org) Our Recreation Cape Coral History

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Wednesday, March 08, 2017

SATURDAY MARCH 11th 1:00-4:00

Public Welcome! Spread The Word!
Saturday, March 11th 1:00-4:00
5785 Cape Harbour Dr. Cape Coral 
Music and Dancing by The Memory Makers
50/50 Raffle * Silent Auctions * Basket Raffle Auctions

Our Host - Fathoms Restaurant & Bar
~The Donors~
Diamonds by Dianne
The Beach Dog
Dr Mel's Wellness Spa
Neilson Law
Lobster Lady
Massage Envy
4 Seasons Realty
Cape Cleaners
Bubba's Roadhouse & Saloon
Morgan Stanley Jeff Hedberg
Magnolia Landing
Ford's Garage
The Run Shoppe
Vogue Hair Studio
RE/MAX Realty Partners
Fort Myers Country Club
Golf & Casual Shop
Diamond Dave's Creative Jewelry
Barbara B Mann
Broadway Palm
Bonefish Grill
Golf World
Hollywood Bicycle
Hair FX Studio & Spa
Paradise Bicycles
Go Girl Cycling
Golf Tec
Ceno Grill
Artist,  Ann McCarty Sickels
Sunstream Hotels & Resorts
Shell Gas Cards
The Westin Cape Coral Resort at Marina Village

 Please support our generous donors who are supporting our cause.

Friday, March 03, 2017

Urge Council to vote ‘No’ on land use change

Letter to the editor Cape Coral Daily Breeze

Cape Coral residents: We are about to be robbed! Why should you care?
The city council is deciding whether to change the land use for the 175-acre Golf Course so D.R. Horton can build hundreds of houses and make lots of money.
We can't get back what we are about to lose if the city council changes the land use for the golf course to make D.R. Horton happy.
City council members should have vision and foresight. They should fight to retain green spaces, parks and recreational areas because they are vital for healthy communities. City growth isn't good unless it's healthy growth.
Importance of green space, parks and recreational areas has been extensively researched. Factual data proves it promotes healthier lifestyles, increases family and community social interactions, decreases crime, reduces juvenile delinquency, reduces mental illnesses and depression, promotes interaction among diverse cultures, enhances the environment, increases property values, encourages tourism and home ownership, provides social opportunities for all ages, and ranks as a major retention factor for professionals in the labor force.
National surveys conclude 8 of 10 people rate green spaces, parks, and recreation areas as "very important" or "extremely important". With these statistics, it's difficult to understand why changing the land use is even a consideration.
Recently "no trespassing" signs were placed on the golf course. Dozens of people are now walking and biking on the streets (without sidewalks). Since Cape Coral/Lee County has an extremely high rate of pedestrian accidents in comparison to many cities, this factor alone should alarm everyone.
Green space, parks and recreational areas are a tangible reflection of the quality of life within a community. The Trust for Public Land shows over the past decade voter approval rates for bond measures to acquire parks and conserve open space exceeds 75 percent. Clearly, the majority of the public views this as an essential priority.
Please take the time to act. Don't allow the city council to rob us of our rights as a community. Please urge them to vote NO to changing the land use designation for the 175 acre golf course. Encourage them to have a pro-active approach and do their homework, if they haven't yet grasped an understanding that the value of green space, parks and recreational areas transcends way beyond the tax base benefit of more houses.
Carol Wilkinson Former (Community planner/ U.S. Army Corps of Engineers) Cape Coral
Dave Shapiro, current/owner (On Time Construction) Cape Coral
Mike and Wendy Erion, former (business owners/Tiki Hut) Cape Coral

Thursday, March 02, 2017

Save Our Recreation Update

Good morning,

Not much news lately.  We give a big “thank you” to all who have been helping staff our tables and getting petitions signed. 

The biggest news is our fundraiser at Fathoms Restaurant & Bar on Saturday, March 11th from 1:00 to 4:00.   Please go to for a list of our local businesses who have very generously donated auction items to support our cause.  See attached Flyer for more details. Please spread the word and feel free to post the Flyer to Facebook.   Hope to see many of you there.

No hearings or public meetings have yet been set for any of the Florida Gulf Ventures or DR Horton applications.  We did get a communication from the Cape Coral Police Chief about their patrolling of the golf course.  I said I would share it with this group and it is below.

Thank you, 

Mary, Barth and Anne

Mr. Wolf,

Florida Gulf Venture, the recorded owner of the closed golf course, recently put up no trespassing signs and, according to the company, also sent out letters to all the residents surrounding the property, advising residents to refrain from going onto the property since it is private property. 

Like any other businesses and/or organizations in the City of Cape Coral, Florida Gulf Venture can hire an off-duty detail, which is predicated on the actual or potential use of law enforcement powers.  The Cape Coral Police Department authorizes many details like this.  The entity contracting the detail pays a standard hourly rate to the City.  That rate pays for the officer, equipment, and insurance, as well as various administrative costs. The cost of the detail is borne by the entity contracting with the City for the detail, not the taxpayer.  This is standard practice across the state of Florida, and indeed, across most police departments around the country, with some variation in how the programs are administered.

Off-duty details, such as this, not only benefit the entity contracting the detail, but they serve a public good through the deterrence and prevention of criminal acts, and to educate and provide information to the public.  The use of off-duty police officers allows for additional police presence in a specific area, for a specific time, without further taxing the on-duty resources of the department.  Officers working such details are exercising their constitutional authority as police officers only.  Cape Coral Police officers do not enforce the policies or procedures of any private entity at any off-duty detail.  The concept of off-duty details, provides a presence that decreases criminal opportunity and makes the public feel safe.

In this case, Florida Gulf Venture has contracted with the City of Cape Coral to hire off-duty officers, for a specific time frame, through the established off-duty detail process.  The officers working this off-duty detail are providing additional police presence on this multi-acre site, a derelict golf course.  The focus of this off-duty detail is to educate and provide information to the residents in the area of this recent change of “no trespassing” on the property.  In order to carry out that function, the officers are authorized to use the equipment issued to them by the Cape Coral Police Department, which includes the use of uniforms, personal equipment, and a police vehicle (just as they would if they were patrolling this multi-acre site while on duty).  

Officers have been notifying citizens, with whom they come in contact, that the site is private property, that “no trespassing” signs have now been posted, and are asking them to leave the property.  The citizens we have encountered have been very understanding.

I understand that this situation has not evolved in the way that many citizens would have preferred.  That said, the owner, Florida Gulf Venture, has taken all reasonable and necessary steps to notify residents in the area. 

Please feel free to contact me if you need further information.


David Newlan, Chief
Cape Coral Police Department