By Irene Arriola

Our condolences to the family of Betty Nissen who passed away in late August. A longtime resident in the city, she was a renowned artist with many awards and membership in both the St Augustine Art Association and the Jacksonville Water Color Society.

And condolences to the family of Michael J Cleary who also passed away in August. Cleary and his wife Roberta have been the proprietors of the St Augustine Courtyard Cafe in the Lightner Museum. Classically trained as a chef, he owned and operated several restaurants on the west coast before moving to St Augustine.

Our condolences go out to the family of Lynn Anderson. Friends and downtowners will remember her wonderful fashion shows held monthly at the Casa Monica with interesting and dynamic local women serving as the models. A member of the Marsh Creek Women’s Association, Ancient City Baptist Church and a new addition to the Beta Sigma Phi International Sorority, her enthusiasm and positive energy will be missed by many.

Congratulations to Michael and Stephanie Lugo at The Tasting Room whose restaurant was recently visited by Emeril Lagasse, American celebrity chef, restaurateur and cookbook author. Look for their downtown restaurant on a new tv special in January 2013 and keep an eye out for Lagasse who is expected to make a follow up trip to The Tasting Room.

On the subject of food, did you know that John Barnes and Beanie Masters have opened up Johnnie and Beanie’s at 224 N Main Street in Hastings. If you’re in the neighborhood between 10am and 2pm Monday through Friday, it’s the place to be and they’ve started a fundraiser for the Council on Aging with their “Nickel a Plate” program. Get some serious down-home cooking and help the COA with all their wonderful programs.

Jean Rahner, Director of A Classic Theatre, has released the 2012 – 2013 schedule starting with “A Christmas Carol,” adapted and staged by Jason Woods, and running with seven shows in December. For the complete season, which includes “The Year of Magical Thinking,” by Joan Didion and performed by Anne Kraft, email

Plum Gallery on Aviles Street will be hosting a number of events this fall starting with this Friday the 14th, with a meet and greet artist lecture by Laura Mongovi. Mongiovi is an Associate Professor in the Department of Art & Design at Flagler College. Her work has been shown nationally and internationally and gallery owner, Karen Sheridan, is excited to host this information dialogue. Refreshments by Bonnie Jones’ Tasty Treats and the latest release from St Augustine’s own Mile Marker Brewery will be available. Visit or call 825-0069 for more information about this and upcoming events.

Downtown artists Wendy Mandel McDaniel and Jan Tomlinson Master Wendy Mandel McDaniel and Jan Tomlinson Master were the creators behind the intricate and colorful mosaic memorial representing the local wildlife in Bird Island Park where the piece is now nestled. More than 140 native plants, animals and birds are represented in “Eco Story,” and it was recently honored as one of the top two public art projects at the 2012 Florida Public Art Year in Review by the Florida Association of Public Art Professionals.

Bravo to Wanda Bray and Paul Williamson from the Public Affairs and Special Events department at the City of St Augustine. They just concluded another very successful Concerts in the Plaza series which was enjoyed by people locals and visitors alike. Take a bow – you deserve it!

Don’t look now but the holidays are just around the corner so clear your calendars for all the exciting events that are coming up.

Irene Arriola Real Estate, Inc.
81 King Street, Suite B Saint Augustine, FL 32084
Email: [email protected] | Office phone: 904.829.2002
Cell phone: 904.669.0691 | Fax: 904.829.2029