Celebrating 40 Years of Sanibel’s Rich Heritage: Gala and Exclusive Documentary Premiere

As we embark on the milestone of our 40th Anniversary, the Sanibel Historical Museum & Village is thrilled to invite you to a spectacular Gala Celebration and the premiere of a captivating documentary. Join us on Tuesday, February 20, 2024, at the iconic Sanibel Community House, located at 2173 Periwinkle Way, for an unforgettable evening steeped in island history and resilience.

Documentary Premiere: “Wreckage, Resilience & Recovery: The History of Hurricanes on Sanibel & Captiva”

We are honored to present a brand-new documentary by the award-winning journalist, Ken Sneeden. “Wreckage, Resilience & Recovery” delves into the captivating history of hurricanes that have shaped the narrative of Sanibel and Captiva islands. Sneeden’s storytelling prowess promises an engaging exploration of the challenges and triumphs our community has faced.

Insights from Local Weather Experts

Robert Van Winkle
Rob Duns
Greg Rule

Our event will feature presentations by esteemed local weather experts:

  • Robert Van Winkle: With 14 years on the air with NBC2, Van Winkle has covered hurricanes such as Charley in 2004, Wilma in 2005, and Irma in 2017. His extensive experience in broadcast journalism and community engagement adds depth to our celebration.
  • Rob Duns: Recognized with numerous awards, Duns joined NBC2 in 2014, providing valuable insights through hurricanes Irma and Ian. His accolades include eight Florida Association of Broadcast Journalist awards and three Suncoast Regional Emmy awards.
  • Greg Rule:  The self-proclaimed “weather nerd” joined the WINK News Weather team in January 2020 from previous stints at WeatherNation and in Grand Junction, CO.  His time in Southwest Florida and his experience forecasting Hurricane Ian will add a fresh dimension to the discussions.

Historical Significance: Gladiolus and Rubies

Adding a touch of history to the celebration, gladiolus and rubies, symbolic of a 40th Anniversary, will take center stage. Fort Myers, once known as the gladiolus capital of the world, had gladiolus farms in the Iona district, contributing significantly to the region’s agricultural heritage.

Gala Highlights: Cocktails & Heavy Hors d’oeuvres

Indulge in an evening of culinary delights, featuring a specially crafted Bubbly Bee Hurricane Cocktail with catering by Leslie Adams. The dress code for the night is Island Festive, creating an atmosphere of celebration and joy.

Event Details:

  • Date: Tuesday, February 20, 2024
  • Time: 5-8 pm
  • Location: Sanibel Community House, 2173 Periwinkle Way


  • $150 per person


  • Island Festive

Secure your spot for this extraordinary event by purchasing tickets online at Sanibelmuseum.org or calling the museum at 239-472-4648.

Join us in celebrating four decades of preserving Sanibel’s rich history and anticipate a future filled with resilience and community spirit. We look forward to sharing this momentous occasion with you.

For further details and media inquiries, please contact: Mark Harmon, Executive Director: info@sanibelmuseum.org

Sanibel Historical Museum and Village is open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Sanibel Historical Village is located at 950 Dunlop Road (next to BIG ARTS) and there is handicap access to eight of the nine buildings. Admission is FREE for SHMV members and $15 for non-members (adults ages 18 years and up).  For more information, call 472-4648 during museum hours or visit www.sanibelmuseum.org.

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