It Takes A Village

17 Mar

Today being St Patty’s Day it is usually about drinking, eating, pretending you’re Irish and yes drinking, mostly it’s about drinking. At the Oldman homestead we usually have corned beef and cabbage, a few pints of Guiness and some soda bread. I think, if you check the wine cellar, you will find some Jameson and Bushmills. Of course, God invented whiskey to keep the Irish from ruling the world.

But today we are not celebrating St. Patty’s Day. No, we are celebrating our little town of Estero becoming a village. Estero, our adopted home of 14 years, was established in 1894 by a cult leader named Cyrus Teed. Teed believed and taught that we lived on the inside of the Earth’s outer skin and the stars are all contained inside the hollow earth. The group was Koreshan Unity and his followers called Koreshans. Since he also taught abstinence for his followers, even married folk, the cult that was once prosperous dwindle with the last remain survivor just recently died. Teed who claimed to be immortal, died in 1908! Teed had the village incorporated 1904 only to become unincorporated again in the 1960’s.

When we moved to Estero, our developer had purchased the remaining 900 acres of Koreshan property and developed 3 golf courses and 1299 homes. Estero’s population at the time was 9,000 people. Just a sleepy rural town of unincorporated Lee County situated half way between Ft. Myers and Naples. Today, we no long have to take day trips to get supplies and food! The village now boast of two major malls, Coconut Point Mall and Miramar Outlet Mall, Hertz World Headquarters, Florida Gulf Coast University, two car dealers and another being built, our own hockey team the Florida Everblades, and 20,000 people, full and part-time residents. After Sanibel, we have the largest tax base in Lee County. We’ve come a long way baby!

After battle with a neighboring community of Bonita Springs, who wanted to take over Estero’s taxable properties i.e. Coconut Point Mall, an approval by the State Legislature and a vote of the registered voters of Estero we are officially a Village. The Village of Estero began anew January 1, 2015. Today we seat our newly elected village counsel. J and I plan on being there to take part in this historical moment for our village. A celebration of sorts.

To be sure, we will celebrate St. Patty’s Day, even if it’s a day later when we have our corned beef and cabbage! No, today is about our Village of Estero!

Hold the Guinness, please!


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