Residents of Southwest Florida Invite To An Informational Meeting At Shell Point During The Month Of September

FORT MYERS, FL. (August 27, 2009) – Residents of Southwest Florida who would like to learn about resort style retirement options and lifecare, are invited to attend one of several informational meetings at Shell Point Retirement Community. One of Shell Point’s experienced retirement counselors will explain the numerous benefits received when becoming a resident at Shell Point.

These meetings will be held three times a week, each one at 9:30am, in the Welcome Center at Shell Point, which is located on the Island. The dates are as follows:
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Shell Point Introduces 2009/2010 Fine And Performing Arts Concert Series

FORT MYERS, FL. (August 24, 2009) – The schedule for Shell Point Retirement Community’s eighth annual Fine and Performing Arts Concert Series of 2009/2010 has been announced by Dawn Boren, director of resident life for Shell Point Retirement Community. This series will feature five concerts including:

The Raleigh Bell Ringers – Thursday, November 12, 2009 at 7:30pm

The American Boy Choir – Tuesday, February 2, 2010 at 7:30pm

The River City Brass Band – Monday, March 1, 2010 at 7:30pm

Ensemble Galilei – Friday, March 12, 2010 at 7:30pm

Contiguglia Brothers – Thursday, April 8, 2010 at 7:30pm
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The Village Church At Shell Point Announces The 2009-2010 Season Of Praise Concert Series

FORT MYERS, FL. (August 17, 2009) – The line up for the 2009/2010 Season of Praise Concert Series at The Village Church at Shell Point Retirement Community has been announced by Randy Woods, minister of worship and music for The Village Church. This series of uplifting sacred music and gospel songs will offer a total of six different performers throughout the series. The artist roster and dates are as follows:

Damaris Carbaugh Sunday ~ November 8, 2009

Jane Holstein & Joel Raney Sunday ~ December 13, 2009

Tim Zimmerman & The King’s Brass Sunday ~ January 10, 2010

The National Christian Choir with Harry Causey Saturday & Sunday ~ February 13 & 14, 2010

David Kim, Principle Violinist with the Philadelphia Orchestra, with Ron Matthews, piano Sunday ~ March 21, 2010

Chelsea Chen, organist Easter Sunday ~ April 4, 2010

“The Season of Praise series is an annual event that residents and visitors alike have enjoyed for many years at The Village Church,” says Pastor Woods. “Each season we try to provide a variety of musical presentations to inspire delight audiences.”

Tickets will be available for purchase starting on October 5, 2009 and are $10 each. To purchase tickets, or receive additional information about the concert series, please call (239) 454-2147 or go to .

The Village Church at Shell Point is a ministry of the Christian and Missionary Alliance and serves a congregation of more than 600. The Village Church is located near the entrance to the Island at Shell Point and seats 1,000 people. Shell Point Retirement Community is a continuing care retirement community located in Fort Myers just off Summerlin Road, two miles before the Sanibel causeway. Shell Point is a nationally recognized leader in the retirement industry.

Concert Series Detailed Descriptions:

Damaris Carbaugh — Sunday ~ November 8, 2009
Gifted singer, Damaris Carbaugh, will open the concert season with her unique blending of inspirational gospel music. Damaris is a featured soloist with the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir and can often be seen on the “Day of Discovery” television program. Her depth of love and devotion to God is so evident through her special gift of song.

Jane Holstein & Joel Raney — Sunday ~ December 13, 2009
The Christmas Season will feature a festive celebration with The Village Church Choir presenting original music and arrangements of traditional carols by the gifted writer Joel Raney. A talented composer, creative arranger and gifted concert pianist, Joel will join forces with organist Jane Holstein to perform a variety of styles in sacred and classical music. Joel Raney and Jane Holstein are significantly recognized for their work with Hope Publishing Company.

Tim Zimmerman & The King’s Brass — Sunday ~ January 10, 2010
It has become a tradition to begin the New Year at The Village Church with a concert featuring Tim Zimmerman & The King’s Brass. Because of the overwhelming popularity, this year they will present a concert on Sunday evening, January 10. Tim Zimmerman and the King’s Brass provide innovative worship through the “best in sacred brass music.” By teaming together, these Christian professionals from around the United States perform their original arrangements as heard on their eight recordings. For more than 20 years, The King’s Brass have performed over 100 concerts each season with three trumpets, three trombones, a tuba, keyboards, and percussion. Playing a wide variety of music from Gabrieli to hymn classics, from Handel to jazz spirituals, from gospel songs to patriotic marches, The King’s Brass uses all corners of the concert hall to lift hearts and spirits in praise.

The National Christian Choir with Harry Causey — Saturday & Sunday ~ February 13 & 14, 2010
From our nation’s capital, under the direction of Dr. C. Harry Causey, The National Christian Choir will be in concert at Shell Point. Founded in 1984 by its current Music Director, C. Harry Causey, the NCC is comprised of over 150 singers from more than 100 different churches throughout the greater Washington, DC area. In addition to their live presentations throughout the US and abroad, the choir’s library of recordings are widely received. Also, their weekly inspirational broadcast, “Psalm 95” is heard on over 400 radio stations (including the Moody Broadcasting Network) in every state, all of Canada and beyond.

David Kim, Principle Violinist with the Philadelphia Orchestra, with Ron Matthews, piano — Sunday ~ March 21, 2010
On Sunday evening, March 21, Shell Point will host the world renowned violinist, David Kim, Concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra. Born in Carbondale, Illinois in 1963, he started playing the violin at age three and later received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from The Juilliard School. In 1986 he was the only American violinist to win a prize at the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow. David is a superb musician whose technical skillful playing creates a luscious tone which glows with old-school warmth. He will be accompanied by acclaimed pianist, Dr. Ron Matthews, Chairman of the Music Department at Eastern University. Their concert will include Massenet’s “Meditation from THAIS,” Brahms’ “Sonatensatz,” and selections from his latest recording, “The Lord Is My Shepherd.”

Chelsea Chen, organist — Easter Sunday ~ April 4, 2010
The concert series will conclude with a festive Easter Celebration on Sunday, with organist, Chelsea Chen. A young talent in top form, Chelsea’s playing has been described as “stunning” and possessing “lovely lyrical grandeur” (Los Angeles Times). Chelsea Chen has electrified audiences throughout the United States and Asia. A Juilliard graduate and Fulbright scholar, she is broadening the classical organ repertoire with her own Asian-inspired compositions. In the past year she performed to great acclaim at Singapore’s Esplanade, Hong Kong’s Cultural Centre, and Los Angeles’s Disney Hall.

Chelsea recorded her debut CD and DVD, “Live at Heinz Chapel,” on the Heinz Chapel organ. Her playing has since been aired on, “Pipedreams” from American Public Media, Hawaii Public Radio, and Taiwan’s Good News Radio. Her distinctive flair and bravado, mastery of repertoire, and command of the instrument will dazzle the listener and show the church’s four manual Allen organ to great effect.

Shell Point Residents’ Art On Display In Burroughs Home During September 4 Art Walk

FORT MYERS, FL. (August 17, 2009) – Shell Point Retirement Community residents Phil Hilton and Dorothy Causey will be the featured artists at the Burroughs Home on behalf of The Uncommon Friends Foundation during the Art Walk on September 4 in downtown Fort Myers. Art Walk occurs on the first Friday each month. A celebration event will take place on Friday, September 4 from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the Burroughs Home as part of the monthly Art Walk in Downtown Fort Myers. The Burroughs Home is just one stop along the monthly Art Walk and a trolley is available for the tour. The event is free and parking is available at the Kingston Home nearby.

“Mr. Hilton and Mrs. Causey are both very honored to be part of this wonderful event,” said Mary Franklin, Shell Point Resort Services Manager. “These residents create beautiful pieces of artwork, and help instruct others who may be new to the hobby. Many residents at Shell Point participate in the art program, as well as a wide array of other recreational programs and clubs that function here.”

Following the Art Walk, Hilton’s and Causey’s paintings can be viewed weekdays through September 17 between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. and on evenings and weekends by calling the Uncommon Friends Foundation, (239) 337-9505, for an appointment. Each artist will donate 50% of all proceeds to the Uncommon Friends Foundation.

Phil Hilton will be displaying his watercolor paintings. Hilton is the author of Watercolor for Beginning Students, a signature member of the Florida Watercolor Society, and has received many awards in six states. Hilton remarks about the event, “It is an honor to represent Shell Point and be involved with such a great organization such as the Uncommon Friends Foundation.”

Dorothy Causey’s medium of choice is oil on canvas and she says she enjoys painting whatever crosses her mind on a given day. Dorothy was the 2005 winner of the Angels of the Arts Award for lifetime achievement, presented by Alliance of the Art. She was the second recipient of this award. The first person to receive this award was Robert Rauschenberg.

The Uncommon Friends Foundation, established in 1993, is a character education foundation whose mission is to instill ethics, moral values and a sense of purpose in tomorrow’s leaders. The foundation is dedicated to enriching society by promoting the positive values author James D. Newton discovered in five unique men and their wives—Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, Harvey Firestone, Dr. Alexis Carrel, and Charles Lindbergh—intellectual giants who helped shape the 20th Century. Additional information about the foundation may be obtained by calling (239)337-9505 or checking the website at .

Shell Point Retirement Community is a not-for-profit continuing care retirement community located in Fort Myers just off Summerlin Road, two miles before the Sanibel causeway. Shell Point has received national accreditation from CARF-CCAC, and is a nationally recognized leader in the retirement industry. The community offers retirement living in a resort-style environment with an 18-hole championship golf course, deep water boating access, and recreational and fitness facilities. To learn more about Shell Point Retirement Community, visit or call 1-800-780-1131.

Shell Point Recognized in National Retirement Guidebook

FORT MYERS, FL. (August 7, 2009) – Shell Point Retirement Community was recognized recently in the publication, America’s 100 Best Places to Retire 4th edition. This book serves as a guide to today’s most popular retirement cities, and includes retirement destinations across the United States. Fort Myers, Florida was included in the list of 100 cities considered as a “best location to retire”, with mention of Shell Point as a retirement community to consider.

“We certainly appreciate being recognized in this popular retirement guide. Fort Myers is an ideal location for retirement, and Shell Point offers a variety of care, services, and amenities to retirees,” said Lynn Schneider, assistant vice president of marketing and communications for Shell Point Retirement Community. “While we are pleased to receive this recognition, we receive greater pleasure in knowing that we are providing the finest care possible to our residents.”
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Shell Point Opened Award-Winning TV Studio For Behind-The-Scenes Tours

FORT MYERS, FL. (August 5, 2009) – Shell Point Retirement Community has many surprising features that the public may not be aware of, and on Tuesday, August 4, the organization’s communications team opened its internal award-winning television studio, SPTV, to visitors for behind-the-scenes tours.

More than 250 guests toured the studio facility during the SPTV Open House where they were able to view multiple sets, observe demonstrations of technical video and editing equipment, and meet the staff who write, shoot, edit and host the various productions created for SPTV, including a daily half-hour show called Shell Point Today.

“SPTV is just one of many examples of how Shell Point is breaking the mold when it comes to retirement communities,” said Lynn Schneider, assistant vice president of marketing and communication for Shell Point Retirement Community. “We decided in 2005 to create an on-site television studio and a daily television program to provide residents with information about the daily activities here on property, but it has become so much more than that. This informational program has grown to a 30-minute daily show with community news and information, interviews conducted by and about residents, special education and entertainment segments, and stories that give our audience a glimpse into the lives of others living and working here. Each day’s show is like a slice of life at Shell Point,” she added.

Backstage Tour

A recent “Extreme Makeover” renovation transformed the SPTV studio, and Shell Point residents were the first to receive a backstage tour. To accommodate the number of residents who wanted to see the studio, five tours were scheduled throughout the day and SPTV staff members took the residents in groups of up to 50 through the studio facility.

“This was a great way for us to interact one-on-one with our resident audience,” said Rochelle Cherniawski, communications coordinator for Shell Point. Cherniawski was one of several staff members on hand to discuss not only the TV studio, but other communications initiatives of the community including the monthly magazine Shell Point Life, and the two websites hosted by the organization for the public and the residents.

Following the resident tours throughout the day, the Shell Point team shifted its attention to guests from outside the community. Visitors from local businesses and the media, as well as community leaders, were provided tours of the facility and a demonstration of numerous programming highlights. In addition to a tour of the studio, these individuals were also provided information about Shell Point and its various services and amenities. A 30-minute narrated bus tour of the community was also available for those interested.

“The TV studio here at Shell Point looks amazing, and is very impressive,” said Melinda Isley, owner of the local public relations firm m.creative. “I thoroughly enjoyed touring the studio as well as hearing about the other aspects of Shell Point through the various booths set up and the staff members.”

“This was my first visit to the Shell Point TV studio,” said Kathleen Taylor, public relations coordinator for LCEC (Lee County Electric Cooperative). “I am sure that the residents and employees both enjoy this communications tool, it is definitely something you don’t see in many places outside of a regular TV station.”

Heidi Davis Taulman of Lee BIA Builders Care agreed, “I was glad I attended and I was thoroughly impressed with the transformation process of the SPTV studio.”

In addition to the studio tours, guests were able to view a variety of the shows and segments produced by SPTV and broadcast to the more than 2,000 residents of the community. “I was pleased to see the number of segments in the community’s programming that focused on environmental issues,” said Molly Meadows, project management analyst senior with the South Florida Water Management District. “Older adults are very concerned about the environment and want to stay informed about issues that affect this area, including intelligent use of water resources, controlling environmental pollutants, recycling, and a variety of other key issues. Shell Point’s television program appears to offer a great deal on these subjects and I was impressed.”

Fort Myers attorney Craig Hersch utilizes video on his firm’s website to help educate his clients and the public about estate, tax, and probate issues and was impressed by the quality of the programming offered on SPTV. “Video is so useful in being able to reach people and give them the information they need as they are making important decisions about their lives. The daily television program at Shell Point increases that ability because residents of the community are able to view information every day that can help them improve the quality of their lives.”

Included among the guests for the evening were a number of representatives from local commercial television affiliates. “All of the local stations opened their doors to us when we were planning to build our studio,” said Schneider. “As a non-profit we did not have the financial resources to hire a professional studio and set design company so we relied on professionals within the industry here in Southwest Florida to help teach us. We learned so much by going to each local station and touring behind-the-scenes. So many of the ideas we incorporated into our studio came from observing theirs.”

“This studio and its capabilities are incredible,” said Roberta Voelker, local sales manager for WINK-TV who attended the event. “I couldn’t believe they were able to accomplish a project of this size in such a short time frame, and with such a limited budget. It really is a very professional television studio and on a smaller scale compares to any commercial facility in terms of design and capabilities.”

“They have really done a phenomenal job,” said Terry Brennen, director of community funding for WGCU, the PBS station located at Florida Gulf Coast University. “WGCU has had a long-standing relationship with Shell Point for many years and I am always impressed by the community’s commitment to excellence. This studio is just one example of their willingness to go the extra mile for their residents and we have already done several projects together combining our resources with theirs. Plus, a lot of folks don’t know that Shell Point also has one of the major program venues in Southwest Florida. Their community auditorium holds more than 1,000 people for performances. WGCU has sponsored several concerts and speakers in the facility, which is open to the public.”

“I didn’t have a pre-conceived idea of what to expect but I was surprised,” said Cindy Burgess, Marketing Communications Manager for The News-Press. “I did not really know the scope of the facility and I learned so much about the depth of the organization and its in-house abilities.”

Extreme Makeover

The initial launch of SPTV in 2005 left many facets of the television operation in need of further development; however, managing, writing, filming, and broadcasting the daily show required constant attention, leaving no time for process improvements. For several years, the studio’s responsibilities grew to include broadcasting the daily show, plus live services from the church on Sunday mornings, filming special events and concerts, and creating training and corporate videos for staff and management. To maintain pace with the growth, the Marketing and Communications team decided to take a one-month hiatus to overhaul the studio and install improvements that would help take it to the next level in production capabilities.

“Just as commercial television programs periodically go on hiatus so that writers and actors can take a break and production companies have time to create new concepts, SPTV took a planned break to provide those same creative opportunities,” said Schneider. “We had a schedule of projects that included re-engineering the equipment in the studio, redesigning sets, and revitalizing the format of the show with new graphics and images.”

The entire communications team participated in benchmarking trips to all four of the major network stations in Southwest Florida (ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX) and the local PBS affiliate at Florida Gulf Coast University (WGCU). At each station the team toured the studio facilities, met with various staff members, and witnessed live broadcasts. The tours provided the team with insights into production, equipment options, lighting and sound, and numerous set design ideas for the revamp of the studio.

Perhaps the most challenging aspect of the hiatus was the task of transforming the studio from a black room with minimal lighting, mismatched furnishings, scattered set design pieces, and one area open for filming, into a more professional studio space. Estimates from set design companies were too expensive. So, instead of hiring a professional set design firm, the team netted substantial cost savings by completing each step of the redesign in-house. Utilizing ideas from their benchmarking trips to network studios, the team took measurements of the space, formulated their own design plan, strapped on their tool belts, and picked up their paint brushes to get the job done. The group worked together with help from friends and family members to paint the studio and build the sets. Each element was installed by members of the communications team who worked weekends and nights to complete the basic design, construction, and painting of a majority of the sets in just three weeks. In addition to creating permanent sets, a lighting grid was designed to pre-light each set, and additional light kits were ordered. When the lighting kits arrived, the SPTV crew installed the lights to provide instant lighting for each set with the simple flick of a switch.

During the hiatus, the team also worked together to investigate and test new reporting and editing styles and a new format was created to include two anchors delivering the daily news at the opening of the show. And to keep it fresh, a team of four men and women began rotating as anchors on a weekly basis.

Prior to the hiatus, a great deal of content for the show was derived during monthly communications meetings attended by representatives from all of the departments at Shell Point. This organization-wide involvement continued to be important to the show’s success as information was exchanged about upcoming events and activities. This group helped brainstorm topics that would be of interest to Shell Point residents and sought additional ways to improve the content of the show. Plus, resident volunteerism increased as additional opportunities were created behind and in front of the cameras such as shooting at community events, interviewing, recording voice-overs, studio organization, and much more.

“Residents were very patient and understanding as we spent the month incorporating these major improvements,” said Schneider. “When we came back on the air, the entire process was significantly enhanced.”

Shell Point Retirement Community is a not-for-profit continuing care retirement community located in Fort Myers just off Summerlin Road, two miles before the Sanibel causeway. Shell Point has received national accreditation from CARF-CCAC, and is a nationally recognized leader in the retirement industry. The community offers retirement living in a resort-style environment with an 18-hole championship golf course, deep water boating access, and recreational and fitness facilities. To learn more about Shell Point, visit us at or call 1-800-780-1131.