GET READY!! Tomorrow is the Day to Give to FISH and your donation will be MATCHED DOUBLING YOUR IMPACT!t


We’ve been asking and now TOMORROW is the Day to Give to FISH and your donation will be MATCHED DOUBLING YOUR IMPACT!








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TWO IMPORTANT REMINDERS: Membership Meeting Tomorrow night & Tuesday-Wednesday’s Giving Challenge

Happy Sunday!

We Just want to send these important reminders.

FIRST: We hope to see you tomorrow night at 7PM at Fishermen’s Hall for our ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING. Come vote on the FISH Board of Directors and hear about the exciting year we have had.

SECOND we are only two days out to the 2022 GIVING CHALLENGE starts Tuesday at Noon and ends on Wednesday at Noon. Every Donation between $25 and $100 will be matched by the Patterson Foundation, doubling the impact of your gift. SO ON TUESDAY after 12:00 NOON click the link below and help by giving a gift that will be doubled.



We thank you so much for your continued support!

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10 Days and Counting till April 26th & 27th 24 hour Giving Challenge

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Volunteers needed for Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival

Jason Schaffer
January 23, 2022

Volunteers needed for Cortez Commercial Fishing FestivalThe food court at the 2020 festival featured seafood, lamb, Polish sausage and a variety of other meals. – Cindy Lane | Sun

CORTEZ – If you’ve ever wanted to be a part of the Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival, now is your chance.

Volunteers are needed for a variety of jobs associated with the annual celebration, which is scheduled in the village on Saturday, Feb. 19 and Sunday, Feb. 20.

Volunteers needed for Cortez Commercial Fishing FestivalThe last Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival was in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. – Cindy Lane | Sun

“We still need 25 to 30 more volunteers,” said FISH Treasurer Jane von Hahmann. “If you’d like to volunteer, we need help with gate entry, tickets and maybe T-shirt sales.”

The Florida Institute for Saltwater Heritage (FISH) board held a special meeting last week to go over some last-minute issues for the popular festival, which draws thousands of visitors annually to the small fishing village.

Details ironed out in the meeting include parking issues, placing of signage and dealing with an increase in cost for just about everything. The same supply chain issues that are driving up prices in the grocery store and at the gas pump are also having an effect on events such as this. Even though costs have risen, the price for this year’s festival will remain at $5, after having been increased from $4 three years ago. The festival is asking for a $5 donation to the local Boy Scouts for parking.

The Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival is held to celebrate the heritage of commercial fishing in Cortez, Florida’s oldest fishing village. This year’s theme is “Gearing Up,” a reference made by fishermen when getting their gear ready to go out on the water. Plenty of live music, great food, wine and beer, arts and crafts and education will be on hand for the 40th edition of the festival. There was no festival last year due to COVID-19.

If you would like to volunteer, please email Angela Collins or call 941-301-4000.

Volunteers needed for Cortez Commercial Fishing FestivalOysters were on the menu at the 38th Annual Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival in 2020. – Cindy Lane | SunVolunteers needed for Cortez Commercial Fishing FestivalFrom left, FISH Treasurer Jane von Hahmann and President Kim McVey discuss the upcoming Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival with the board. – Jason Schaffer | Sun

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Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival only a month away

Jason Schaffer

January 17, 2022

FISH Festival only a month awayPlans continue for the Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival at FISH’s Jan. 3 board meeting. – Jason Schaffer | Sun

CORTEZ – The Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 19-20, and the Florida Institute For Saltwater Heritage (FISH) board is hard at work.

For this 40th year of the popular festival, the theme is “Gearing Up,” a term fishermen use for getting their gear ready before they hit the water.

Musical acts

Saturday, Feb. 19

10-11 a.m. Shanty Singers

11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Karen & Jimmy Band

1-1:30 p.m. Awards and Introductions

2-4 p.m. Eric Von Band

4:30-6 p.m. Soul-R-Coaster

Sunday, Feb. 20

10:30 a.m.-noon Soupy Davis & The Band

12:30-2 p.m. Manatee River Blue Grass

1-5 p.m. Eric Von on the Porch (Bratton Store porch)

2:30-4 p.m. KoKo Ray Show

4:30-6 p.m. Doug Deming & The Jewel Tones

If you love fishing boats, gear, seafood and the fishing lifestyle, this event is for you. If you know nothing about commercial fishing, can’t bait a hook or wouldn’t know a crab trap if you were stuck in one, this event is also for you. FISH hopes everyone who attends will not only enjoy the great live music, delicious food, cold drinks and activities for all ages, but also leave having learned about life in Cortez, commercial fishing and its impact on Florida.

During the board’s Jan. 3 meeting, the main topic of discussion was an increase in cost for just about everything associated with the event, which is a strain on the festival’s budget. The festival is FISH’s main revenue source, and it was canceled last year due to the pandemic, which makes this year’s budget tighter to begin with. The board also expressed a need for volunteers.

Admission is $5 for adults and free to children 12 and under. The festival entrance is in the historic Cortez village at 4415 119th St. W. Find more information at the FISH website.

Sent from my iPad

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2022 Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival – Food Vendors

Attached is the Food Vendor application to obtain a booth at the 2022 Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival, February 19-20, 2022.

Please use the email address and phone number shown on the application for any question or inquiry.

2022 Food Vendor – Cover Letter and Application.pdf

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2022 Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival – February 19-20, 2022

Attached is the application for any Artist who wants to obtain a booth at the 2022 Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival, February 19-20, 2022.

Please use the email address and phone number shown on the application for any question or inquiry.

The Food Vendor application will be added as soon as it is available.


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A 65′ Mega bridge is coming to Cortez if we don’t STOP IT!

Hello FISH Member,

Well it has been a few months since our last email to our membership and now we feel the need to reach out and enlighten all our members on an issue that will have a significant impact on the Historic village of Cortez.

Many of you may know that for years we have been fighting the plans for a 65′ Fix Span High Rise Bridge. A Bridge that will split this community in two, requires a new Frontage Road for accessing Business by the water since this new structure will require a 20 ft high retaining wall be built 350′ to 400′ into the Village, thereby blocking access to a number of streets on the southside of Cortez Rd and 127th St on the Northside. Here is a picture of the new frontage road:

Per FDOT’s own admission there will be absolutely NO IMPROVEMENT to West Bound Traffic and the only improvement for those coming eastbound will be to those coming from LongBoat Key, they will be able to exit the island 1 minute 46 seconds faster than they do today!! Yeah, great idea to destroy this village and the safety of its residents for a 1minute 46 seconds!!

We have been Challenging this Bridge since March 2019 in Federal Court but now it is getting real. We had Court required Mediation on August 25th. Unfortunately though we offered to compromise on a new 35′ Bascule (Draw) Bridge, which would meet the needs of both the community and the needs of FDOT to replace a failing Bridge, FDOT didn’t budge and neither did we so now it is off to Court. We have hired an Attorney, in fact two for the price of one, to help us with this case. We truly believe that FDOT failed in several legal requirements needed to be completed before approving this atrocity! But now we need your support, both financially and by writing letters.

Here is a link to our Go Fund Me Page any donation will be greatly appreciated. Just Click here Stop the Mega Bridge Cortez

or here ;

If you want to contribute but don’t want to use the Go Fund Me page you are welcome to contribute by mailing a check to FISH PO Box 606, Cortez, FL 34215 Please place "Bridge Fund" on the Memo line of your check.

Please write to FDOT District #1 Secretary LK Nandam ask him to compromise with citizens in accepting the 35′ DrawBridge.

Address your comments to: Honorable Sec. L.K. Nandam Email: l.nandam or Mail to: 801 N. Broadway Ave., Bartow, FL 33830 Phone: 863-519-2201

1st and foremost speak from the heart.

1. Ask FDOT to compromise and build the 35’ Bascule (draw) Bridge. a.) It meets the goal of FDOT to replace a functionally failing bridge b.) it also meets the needs of the two communities and their residents most impacted by the physical structure, Cortez and Bradenton Beach.

2. You can talk about the flooding and the building and increasing hard structures in the Floodplain. The impacts of 12′-20′ walls and our fear of what happens to properties adjacent to these very high walls if there were a storm surge, especially Cortez Park. All their structures are on the ground, nothing is elevated.

3. Also the view shed and light pollution impacts that will be had when this 65′ Bridge is built. Remember the true road-deck height is 75′ NOT 65′

4. Finally the impact this Bridge will have on the Historic Village of Cortez. We are not talking Impacts to the physical structures, but the Culture, Industry and citizens that have called this Historic Village HOME for over 132 years!

This is so important, please help in any way you can. If you have friends who might not be members of FISH but would oppose this horrible bridge and the damage it will do please forward this to them. You are welcome to cut and paste the Go Fund Me Link to your Social Media Pages (FaceBook, Twitter, Instagram ect…) Here it is again:

Thanks and lets take care of what we have for it is slowly slipping away!


Jane von Hahmann


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A Mega Bridge is coming to Cortez!!!

You are invited to an Informational Town Hall meeting hosted by FISH where we will be discussing FDOT’s (Florida Dept of Transportation) decision to replace our present 17′ Drawbridge with a 65 foot fixed span bridge. Meeting: Thursday August 12th 7 PM
Where: Fishermens’ Hall 4511 124th St W Cortez, 34215
See Flyer below PLEASE Share!

Sent from my iPad

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Albert Few Jr.

Albert Few died in Bradenton, FL, on June 29, 2021. Albert was born in Bradenton, FL on June 9, 1921. Reared in commercial fishing Village of Cortez and was a winter visitor there from 1976 to 1998. He was a resident of Bradenton Westminster Towers since 1998.

Graduated Bradenton High School in 1939 and attended Florida Southern College at Lakeland. He was a WWII decorated combat fighter pilot. Veteran of the United States Army Air Corps. In the air he flew over North Africa, Pantelleria, Sicily and Italy. Graduated from University of Alabama (Roll Tide) with a BS degree in aeronautical engineering.

He was a past member of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and was a FAA certified flight instructor in the general aviation community. Employed by the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics at Langley Air Force Base, Hampton, VA. As an aeronautical research engineer from 1948 to 1956 he published numerous papers and research memorandums on the stability and performance characteristics of aircraft and missiles obtained from extensive wind tunnel investigations at subsonic and supersonic speeds.

Retired in 1976 as a NASA supervisory aerospace engineer serving in most notable programs as SATURN APOLLO lunar launch vehicle and SPACE SHUTTLE vehicle aerodynamic design at the Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL under Dr. Von Braun. He was awarded the Marshall Center Director’s Commendation for outstanding leadership and dedicated service to the space shuttle aerodynamic design program.

He was a member of the First United Methodist Church and the Alabama Emmaus community.

He was predeceased in death by his first wife, Clara Elizabeth Makiu Few and his second wife, Ruth E. Toiniclek Few. He is survived by his son, William T. Few of Largo, FL; daughter, Elizabeth F. Booth as well as granddaughter, Camille and great-grandson, Henry Middleton of Jacksonville, FL.

The family will receive friends Friday July 2, 2021 from 11:30AM to 12:30PM with Services commencing at 12:30PM. He will be laid to rest at 2:00PM at Manasota Memorial Park with final honors by the U.S. Air Force.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions to Tidewell Hospice or First United Methodist Church.
Funeral arrangements by Shannon Funeral Homes. Condolences made at

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