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Marco Island

Marco Island, the largest inhabited isle of the Ten Thousand Islands. It has six miles of beach and over 100 miles of waterways within its 24 square miles. It lies within the subtropical to tropical climate zone and experiences a distinct wet and dry season with most of the rainfall occurring between the months of June and October. The permanent population is 15,000 which in the peak winter season rises to 35,000.

The City of Marco Island is located in Collier County, a short drive from the City of Naples. It is well known for its high quality of life, natural resources, casual atmosphere, and friendly people.

On August 28, 1997, the people of Marco Island elected to incorporate. Marco Island became a city for the second time. The first time the city was known as Collier City and was incorporated in 1927, but later unincorporated.

Within the county, there are over 30 arts organizations and more than 100 galleries. From community theater performances to art galleries, Marco Island has a variety of choices for cultural activities such as a world-class art league facility, historic exhibits, and a working artists' studio. There are street festivals, outdoor art fairs, performances by dance troupes and concert bands.

The cultural diversity of the area attracts professional artists and musicians like a magnet. Others can join in the artistic experience by taking advantage of the many art classes offered on the island.

Other activities include shelling the beaches and experiencing the local color at one of the many outdoor "chickee bars" scattered around the island.

Marco Island was once the domain of the fierce Calusa Indians and hardy pioneers. It is believed that the Calusa moved to Florida at least 4000 years ago. When Christopher Columbus set sail to explore the new world, the Calusa were flourishing along the lower gulf coast; rich land and sea resources provided the Calusa with a plentiful food supply and raw materials for tools, shelter, and clothing.

The Calusa were expert woodworkers who carved hollowed-out canoes, beams and planks for their houses, docks, and piers. Archeological finds on Marco Island revealed fine hand-carved works -- masks, animals, and even gods. The most famous discovery, a six-inch wooden panther-like figure, named Key Marco Cat, is now housed in the Smithsonian Institution.

The island and Southwest Florida were nearly uninhabited until after the Civil War. Pioneers, willing to live on the raw, mosquito-infested mangrove swamp settled the island and fished, hunted, and shipped surplus crops to Key West. While well-cultivated plantations were observed in 1824.

Inland Marco Island is a maze of waterways, mangroves and sawgrass that provides sanctuary for more than 200 exotic and domestic species of birds.

Choose from the following to find out more about:

 

Marco Island Area Chamber of Commerce
1102 North Collier Blvd.
Marco Island, FL 34145
(239) 394-7549
www.marcoislandchamber.org