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Beach renourishment efforts scheduled on Anna Maria Island

Beach renourishment efforts scheduled on Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria Island, Florida -- Positive changes will soon be coming to the coasts of Anna Maria Island.

Soon, residents and visitors may begin to notice beach renourishment efforts from Coquina Beach to Longboat Pass in upcoming days and weeks as crews begin to mobilize the first of a three-phase project to restock island beaches with their trademark white sand.

Actual dredging will begin by April 1 and should last about one month, depending on weather conditions. Following the Coquina renourishment, a smaller project will be done near the Sandbar restaurant on the north end of Anna Maria.

Portions of Coquina receiving sand will be closed for one day at a time while 200,000 cubic yards of sand are delivered but the rest of the beach will remain open. Charlie Hunsicker, director of Manatee Natural Resources Department, said renourishing the beach will help protect Gulf Drive from storm waves.

Lakewood Ranch gets new sports complex

Lakewood Ranch gets new sports complex

Lakewood Ranch, FL - A new $1 million, 70-acre sports complex is coming to the Lakewood Ranch area which will feature up to 22 soccer fields and other field sports like Pop Warner football, lacrosse, rugby, and even frisbee.

The complex will provide state of the art ammenities for local atheletes to use for games and practice, but it is also intended to providing hosting opportunities for state and national tournaments for teams all across the country, which could give a significant boost to the local economy by bringing business to local shops, hotels, and restaurants.

The complex should open in April, and could eventually include playgrounds, benches, and picnic tables.