North Fork of the St. Lucie River.

Improvement plans project bright future

The months ahead — January, February and March — are what we usually call peak season on the Treasure Coast as tourists and part-time residents flock to our sunny climes. But because of the coronavirus pandemic and restrictions placed on travel — both governmental and self-imposed — this season will be remarkably different. The latest figures for the last quarter of 2020 weren’t available as we went to press, but Visit Florida statistics from the third quarter showed that....

CITY OF PORT ST. LUCIE MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Event CenterCentering a city

In a year of canceled air travel and cruises, staycations within Florida have helped satisfy the hunger for a change of scenery. When visiting a new city, the natural place to start is its downtown, with retail, restaurants, government, offices, theaters, galleries and parks. Downtowns are often home to farmer’s markets, car shows, art and craft shows, home shows, parades, even 5K runs. If you live in or visit a city, downtown is the place to be.

Port St. Lucie Business WomenGetting down to business

Career plans and professional concerns became a hot topic for a group of local women. Charlotte DeVane, Joyce Nix, Patty Brink and Susan Barber were close friends who all worked in the banking industry. At a time when there were no local professional organizations that welcomed women or addressed their concerns, these women changed all of that.

North Fork of the St. Lucie River.

Port puzzler resolved

“Where’s the ‘port’ in Port St. Lucie?” puzzled newcomers have asked since Port St. Lucie emerged from its status as a developer’s dream and crystallized into a city in 1961.

Truth be known, they probably wondered even before it was a city, when the Mackle Brothers were building what became Port St. Lucie. The Mackles’ successor, General Development Corp., had a penchant for starting developments all over the state with port in the name — never mind that they might be miles and miles from the nearest ocean.

Crosstown Parkway extension

Awards keep adding up

Port St. Lucie continued its winning ways from August through late November with 15 new awards and honors.

Cocos’ Valencia Cay home

A window to design

A spacious Valencia Cay home, which Cathy and Ed Coco had contracted to build nearly two years ago, was ready just in time. Narrowly missing having to spend the COVID-19 lockdown in a two-bedroom apartment, they were able to move into their new Port St. Lucie home in February 2020.

Design firm Dow Decorating, owned and operated by husband and wife partners Kathy and David Dow, helped achieve the exact look the Cocos wanted.

grilled octopus

Diverse & Delicious

One of Fernando Dovale’s favorite things to do, outside of cooking at his restaurant, Fernando’s Dockside Grille, is to return to his native Portugal and visit small villages, trying their local foods and then creating his own recipes from the amalgamation of those trips.

When he was growing up, Dovale recalls being around seafood and fisheries. In Figueira da Foz, a coastal town in Portugal, Dovale was introduced to the art of salted cod, various types of shellfish and how to carefully choose the freshest seafood.

Bagpiper David Lairson


Legend says that in the ancient British Isles, when old religions flourished, of all the sounds men could make, only the bagpipes could be heard in both worlds.

But bagpiper David Lairson of Tradition has a more modern saying: “There are two types of people in the world — those who love bagpipes and those who hate them.”

Dawn Martin


It is obvious when you step into her office that Dawn Martin is an ultra-organized and professional businesswoman. She has built her two companies from the ground up and is leaving her mark on the Treasure Coast as an exceptional mixologist and passionate events planner and designer.

Taylor Runk


The 1984 movie Ghostbusters theme song asks “Who you gonna call?” when strange things happen. People with strange animal issues may call Taylor Runk, owner of Rats to Bats Wildlife Removal. And the removal aspect is key to his philosophy of conservation.

The job has its challenges. When someone called claiming to have a duck in his attic, Runk was skeptical.


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