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Longboat Key Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2010 8 years ago

Village Association looks back on the Key's history


Bobcats, deer and bears, oh my!

Although you won’t find these creatures on Longboat Key today, they probably inhabited the island before European settlers arrived and began logging in the early 1500s.

Lands End resident Tom Mayers spoke about Longboat Key’s past Wednesday, Jan. 6, at the Longbeach Village Association meeting. He provided a brief environmental-and-wildlife history of the Key before speaking about his childhood on the island.

“We never imagined things would change so much,” he said. “But they sure have.”

The Mayers family moved to Longboat Key permanently in 1959. Mayers showed pictures that spoke of his childhood memories, including hunting for rattlesnakes and floating a boat through the outside of Mar Vista Dockside Restaurant & Pub after a hurricane. A few of the slides generated whistles from the group: They featured Mayers’ sister, Joan Mayers Bergstrom, who was in the audience, when she was Miss Longboat Key in 1963.

Mayers encouraged the audience to join the Longboat Key Historical Society and to take care of remaining wildlife.

“Think about the animals that are here and that are left,” Mayers said. “Be kind to them.”

Contact Robin Hartill at [email protected].

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