Treasure Islettes present Treasure Island Fire Department with $3600

The Treasure Islettes, the women’s club of Treasure Island, presented the Island’s  Fire Chief, Frank Fernandez, with a check for $3,600.00 to honor the memory of Charlie Fant,who served the Fire Department of Treasure Island for 41 years. He was Chief for 30 of those years. Fant succumbed to cancer in January.

Islettes president Toni Hawkins made the presentation to Fire Chief Fernandez. The donation will help pay for much needed water rescue equipment.

Photo ID (from left): Treasure Island Fire Chief Frank Fernandez, Elaine Dawson, Judy Koepkey and Islettes President Toni Hawkins

The Treasure Islettes meet on the fourth Monday evening of each month from September to May at the Treasure Island Community Center. More information about membership can be obtained by calling Vice President Elaine Dawson at 727-363-6230 or email

Tampa Bay Ferry Launches Summer 2-for-1 Special

Since 2016, Tampa Bay Ferry has been showcasing our precious beach communities from the water. This “Transportainment” option provides a fun and unique way for tourists and locals alike, to enjoy traveling the beaches. Plus, it provides tourists the opportunity to experience the waterways like a local. Tampa Bay Ferry offers the lowest price boat ride in South Pinellas County. This summer, the Ferry is making the saltwater experience a bit sweeter with a Buy One Day Pass Get an Additional Day Free.

Who: Tampa Bay Ferry in Madeira Beach and Treasure Island
What: Summer Special: Buy one day pass, get another day free
When: All summer long 

About Tampa Bay Ferry: Founded in October 2016 and created in partnership by The City of Madeira Beach and Hubbard’s Marina, Tampa Bay Ferry services Madeira Beach, Treasure Island, and St. Petersburg. The ferry offers residents and visitors an alternative and entertaining transportation option via the intercostal waterway. For more information about the ferry service, to view maps, pick-up locations and times or to purchase tickets, please visit or call (727) 398-6577The best way to see the bay!

About Hubbard’s Marina: Founded in 1928 by Capt. Wilson Hubbard, and operated today by 2nd and 3rd generation, Capt. Mark and Capt. Dylan Hubbard, Hubbard’s Marina is the premier destination for fishing and family fun. Hubbard’s offers  510, 12, 39, 44, and 63 hour fishing trips, private charters, daily dolphin watching, a daily sunset cruise with free beer and wine, and a 3-hour beach shelling cruise, ALL leaving from Hubbard’s Marina. For more information or to book a reservation, please visit or call(727) 393-1947The best way to see the sea!

Water Rescue and Drowning in Treasure Island

On Thursday, June 8, 2017, at approximately 7:15 p.m., the Treasure Island Police Department and St. Pete Beach Fire and Rescue responded to a water rescue in the 10600 block of the Treasure Island Beach behind the Bilmar Hotel. A 911 caller reported three (3) swimmers may have been stuck in the rip tide in urgent need of help. Treasure Island Police Officers arrived on scene and observed several swimmers in the rough surf. St. Beach Fire and Rescue arrived shortly after and began life saving efforts both in the water and on shore. Pinellas Suncoast Fire and Rescue also responded and assisted with efforts on the shore.

A group of friends had been swimming together when they were apparently caught in a dangerous rip current. Several minutes may have passed before witnesses noticed they were in distress and struggling against the current. The group included 43 year old Jody Boyer of St. Petersburg, 45 year old Carlton Dubois of St. Petersburg, 47 year old Kimberly Dubois of Ft. Myers and 48 year old Robert McCarthy of Ft. Myers. Boyer, Carlton Dubois and his sister Kimberly returned to the shore aided by first responders and a number of passersby. Carlton also tried to render aid to the others.

McCarthy was initially located under water by 53 year old Randal Fry of St. Petersburg who also had been on the beach. Fry used a boogie board and paddled out to where he located McCarthy. Fry attempted to bring McCarthy to shore; however, he was struggling against the treacherous conditions before being assisted by a rescue swimmer from the St. Pete Beach Fire and Rescue. McCarthy was brought to shore where CPR and other life saving measures were undertaken before he was transported to Palms of Pasadena Hospital. Unfortunately, McCarthy was under the water for too long and died early this morning as a result.

We would like to remind the public to be aware of their swimming abilities as well as their limitations. When using any of the beaches in our state, swimmers should check local forecasts from a number of available resources such as the National Weather Service, the Weather Channel or the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) or a number of other local media outlets for rip current warnings. If you are caught in a rip current, do not fight the current but rather swim out of the current parallel to shore. If you cannot escape, try to float or tread water and call or waive your hands for assistance.

Information courtesy of Treasure Island Police Department.

Learn more about Rip Current safety here.

Whale Rescue on Treasure Island

At approximately 7:50 am Sunday, June 4, 2017, Treasure Island Police Officers assisted Clearwater Marine Aquarium with rescuing a young whale beached in the 8400 block of Treasure Island beach.  The exact species of whale is unknown at this time.  The whale was approx. 7 ft in length with an estimated weight of 400 lbs.  It is also unknown at this time what condition the whale is in. 

Volunteers from the Clearwater Marine Aquarium have taken the whale to Sea World in Orlando, FL. for further assessment.  Sgt. Aaron DeShay of the Treasure Island Police Department held the whale upright in the shoreline to ease its ability to breath at the request of the Aquarium staff until further help arrived.  Officer Liz Myrand also assisted volunteers with keeping track of breaths from the whale to assist with monitoring its progression.  
A small pod of similar whales were observed circling the area approximately 200 yards off shore.  As whales are social mammals,  it is likely they were searching for their lost pod member.  This was a great team effort by several agencies.  We are hopeful for a full recovery and its safe return to the Gulf waters.
Jeff Jensen Public Information Officer for the City of Treasure Island, Florida

Dining: Middle Grounds Grill Celebrates 10 Years

A decade ago, Treasure Island’s beloved Robbie’s Pancake House transformed into Middle Grounds Grill, a culinary haven for seafood and steak lovers. Superb food, service and cocktails coupled with an elegant, boutique wine list and craft beers, brings locals and visitors flocking to this superb restaurant.

PN caught up with Dan Coover, who proudly said Middle Grounds is still a family affair. His dad, brother Scott and sister-in-law Wendy Coover, even Scott’s son, little Scott, are all involved in the restaurant, although Dad heads out to Montana in spring just after the bi-annual May classic car show at the restaurant.

What’s the secret to their success? “We get the freshest fish possible every day and deliver a dining experience that is like no other, especially with the aquarium that makes you feel like you’re dining under the sea,” says Dan. “We also offer wet-aged steaks, upscale entrees, delicious sauces and unique seasonal dishes in a casual, comfortable atmosphere without the fancy white tablecloths.”

You can get treated like a VIP in a tuxedo or flip-flops. It’s a local hotspot, with nightly light live music seven nights a week during season (including April), a full bar that you can dine at, magnificent martinis, a tempting kids menu, daily happy hour (4:30-7), $12.95 early bird specials (4:30-5:30) and ½ price wine bottles on Wednesday. There’s valet parking and a private banquet room that seats 48 for receptions and parties.

Earlier this year, Middle Grounds refurnished the patio with new tables and chairs making it more of a hip lounge experience where you can drink and eat as well. For Easter and Mother’s Day, the restaurant opens at 3 p.m. and serves the regular menu with a few holiday favorites, such as lamb for Easter.

Seafood rules here. The best fresh fish from here and around the world is delivered daily. Hogfish it sells out quickly. One of the most popular dishes is a three nut-crusted, fresh local, black grouper, served with mango beurre blanc.

On the apps and salad side, big hits are the Key West chowder, grilled Mediterranean octopus salad, fresh smoked mahi fish spread, tangy ginger calamari, coconut almond-crusted shrimp, artichoke gouda dip on toast points and Prince Edward island mussels hand-selected for presentation and delivered live on ice.

For meat lovers, order the 18 oz bone-in cowboy steak topped with gunpowder onion rings, New Zealand lamb shank, stuffed veal scaloppini or herb-crusted pork tenderloin.  Says Dan: “All of our steaks are certified angus beef, wet aged unlike Bern’s that uses a dry aged steak and a totally fabulous flavor.” Get your steak Oscar style with crabmeat, asparagus and hollandaise sauce or served with a lobster tail.

Save room for desserts and after-dinner drinks, especially the deep-fried cheesecake rolled in Rice Krispies, the chocolate lava cake and tangy key lime stack with tuile cookies.

Middle Grounds serves some of the most innovative sauces to pair with their dishes. Right now, the chimichurri and mango habanero sauces have my vote. “The customers drive what dishes stay on the menu,” says Dan proudly. “It becomes a signature dish because they love it so much and tell their friends.”

So if you want to enjoy a little dish of paradise, head over to Middle Grounds Grill. Open at 4:30 daily.
If you get there too early, stop in next door at Coffee Grounds for a cocktail or vanilla cafe latte.

FYI:  Open 4:30 daily.  10925 Gulf Blvd., Treasure Island; 727-360-4253,

Treasure Island Beach Sign Design Contest

Ahoy artists. The City of Treasure Island is hosting a design competition to create beach signs. The contest is open to everyone ages 10 and older. Help keep beaches healthy and looking good by designing a sign to help promote litter prevention. Finalists will be selected in five categories and have their art featured on one of the City’s new beach information signs.

 Best Overall
 Best Anti-Litter Message
 Best Original
 Best of ages 10 to 14 years old (at the time of submittal)
 Best of ages 15 to 18 year old (at the time of submittal)

Submission Guidelines: Clip and fill out the entry form next to this article. Each entry must be accompanied by a separate entry form.

 The entries must be on a single sheet of 8.5” x 11” paper, landscape.
 Use white, non-glossy paper; do not laminate.
 Any art medium may be used (e.g., colored pencils, crayons, paint); however, computer graphics will not be accepted. Artwork must be hand-drawn.
 Artwork must be flat (e.g., no glued pieces or glitter) and able to be scanned.
 Avoid using brand names in the artwork.
 A description of no more than 75 words must accompany the artwork (space provided on the entry form). Label each entry on the back in pencil (marker bleeds through the artwork)

Artwork should be mailed or delivered to no later than 4 pm March 31. Beach Sign Art Contest, City of Treasure Island – City Hall 120 108th Avenue Treasure Island, FL 33706.

Treasure Island Holiday Happenings

santa-mailboxSanta’s Mailbox  December 1 through December 16, Santa will personally answer letters from all boys and girls who drop off or mail letters to his mailbox located in front of the Treasure Island City Hall at 120 108th Avenue. Santa’s elves remind everyone to have a return address on their letters.
An Afternoon at the North Pole will be held on Saturday, December 17th from 1-3pm at the Treasure Island Community Center, Gulf Boulevard at 106th Avenue. Activities will include a visit from Santa Claus and live holiday shows throughout the afternoon. Enjoy a magical afternoon cookie decorating, making holiday arts & crafts projects, train rides, face painting, and enjoying interactive entertainers. The event is free to the public.                  
31st Annual Treasure Island Holiday Lighted Boat Parade and Celebration is scheduled for Sunday, December 11th at The Club at Treasure Island, 400 Treasure Island Causeway. The Holiday Celebration begins at 4:30pm with the Boat Parade leaving the Club at 6:20pm. Bring one unwrapped NEW TOY or provide a cash donation to the “Christmas Toy Shop of Pinellas” or “The Edward’s Family Foundation” to the Recreation Department at City Hall or Treasure Bay on Paradise Boulevard by Friday, December 19th   to receive a family pass to watch the parade from a spectacular vantage point, and participate in the events at the Club.  Live entertainment, a visit by Santa and Mrs. Claus, cash bar and food will be served poolside.  For additional information, please call the Club at (727) 367-4511, ext. 236
Recreational Camp for Children ages 5-12 years old will be held from Monday, December 19th through Friday, December 30th from 8:00am to 5:00pm. There will be no camp on Monday, December 26th. Activities will include games, sports, arts & crafts, movies and field trips. Registration is held at the Recreation Department inside City Hall at 120 108th Avenue.  Registration forms are also on-line at  The fee for the camp is $25/day for Treasure Island residents and $30/day for non-residents of Treasure Island (discounted weekly rates are available).
For additional information, please call the Treasure Island Recreation Department at (727) 547-4575, ext 237.

Welcome Diny Jewelers to Treasure Island

Beverly J. Diny is a highly-trained and trusted, experienced fine jeweler who focuses on her client’s particular wants, needs and desires. An innovator with strong interpersonal skills, Beverly has more than 33 years of experience in the fine jewelry business. She and her husband Pete own two Diny’s Jewelers, one in Middleton, Wisconsin and a new one on 107th Ave., just north of Treasure Island’s clock tower.

When I first met Beverly in 1983 when she and Pete opened their first store in Darlington, Wisconsin, a small agricultural city of 2,500 people. When they moved to Stoughton, Wisconsin two years later, I followed them. In need of several appraisals from a jeweler I trusted, we became friends. Our friendship continued as they moved their store to Madison and then finally to Middleton where they have been for 14 years. We have become good family friends! That happens to Beverly a lot.


About 10 years ago I invited Beverly to a girl’s week in St. Petersburg. I kept saying to everyone, “we have got to get to the beach”. Beverly fell in love with the beach and the community that I had been telling her about for years. We parked in the public parking area near the Bilmar and set up in front of Sloppy Joe’s for an afternoon of sun and fun.

She has been returning to the Bilmar 2-4 times a year for vacation ever since 2010. When her store space came up for sale, she had to have it. She obtains, or creates your very own personalized custom jewelry. A diamond expert who travels to Antwerp, Belgium to buy diamonds directly for stock, she takes personal orders. Beverly is dedicated to continuous satisfaction with every individual experience. She constantly invests in continuous training. She uses this knowledge to provide such high quality, delicate care to each customer that they often become long-lasting friends. Call 727.827.7902 or visit, and soon

Diny Jewelers is located at 130 107th Avenue, Treasure Island, In Clock Tower Plaza. 

Story by Janet West 

Treasure Island Women’s Club Raises More than $8K

treasure-islettes-2The Treasure Island’s Women’s Club, the Islettes, raised more than 8K to benefit the community.

On March 12 at the Treasure Island Community Center 250 people attended an Islettes fundraising event that brought in more than 8K. This is one of the largest total the Islettes has brought in during one day in its 60-year history. President Mary Cox was delighted and said it is so gratifying to know that 100 percent of the proceeds will help fund many needed projects. Millie Fant, the Chairman, for the Beautification Committee, together with numerous Islettes members worked tirelessly on the luncheon, raffles, silent auction that included generous donations by local businesses and fashion show provided by Macy’s Department store and modeled by Islettes members.

The Treasure Islettes meet on the fourth Monday at 7 pm of each month from September to May at the Treasure Island Community Center. The Islettes welcomeall women who have an interest in volunteerism for more information contact the Treasure Islettes by email at or Marian Alton at 727-360-0164.

Bingo runs every Thursday at 6:45 pm and 7:45 pm at the Treasure Island Community Center, One Park Place, Treasure Island (behind Walgreen’s).


Picture 1: Julian (the former Mayor of Treasure Island) and Chairwoman Millie Fant, take a break from the Islettes fundraising event

Picture 2: Islettes – Marian Rada, Pauline Green and Marian Alton take a break from the festivities

Treasure Islettes Christmas Donations

As the holidays approach, most people think about spending time with family and opening gifts but for others, the holidays can be lonely.  This year the Treasure Islettes decided to give monetary contributions to the non-profit organization Be A Santa to A Senior. A national charity that makes the season happier for and helps provide much-needed items to homebound, financially challenged, lonely seniors in Pinellas county. Additionally, 24 residents at the Florida Sherriff’s Youth Ranch and Villas were given gift certificates to make their Christmas brighter.


Through their extensive fund raising efforts and volunteer service hours, the Treasure Islettes have supported their community and other charitable organizations since their inception in 1955.  Fundraising projects include weekly Thursday night Bingo.  Please join the Islettes Thursday evenings for games.  Early bird games begin at 6:45 pm and regular games at 7:45 pm.  They have a great snack bar, free coffee and cash prizes – so come and spend an evening with the Islettes and support your community.  The games are held at the Treasure Island Community Center located behind Walgreens. For more information about the Bingo games please contact, Marian Cox at 727512-9102.

The Treasure Islettes meet on the fourth Monday evening of each month from September to May at the Treasure Island Community Center. More information about membership can be obtained by calling Marian Alton at 360-0164.