Even the (Kitchen?) Sink Was For Sale at Warm Mineral Springs
I thought in some sort of a Hail Mary play orchestrated by Sarasota County Government, City of North Port and Cypress Lending Group, Warm Mineral Springs would be saved in the eleventh hour. It didn’t happen. Yesterday at 5 p.m., Warm Mineral Springs closed indefinitely after a weekend sale selling everything from the lavender-colored lounge chairs to filing cabinets and desktop computers to a (kitchen?) sink.
Warm Mineral Springs Is Closed, Now What?
As I previously shared about the crazy situation centered around this Southwest Florida internationally recognized attraction, the two governmental bodies couldn’t decide what to do with it in a timely manner. By the time they decided for a company to come in and temporary manage the property, Cypress Lending Group, the management company through June 30, made up its mind to leave in this letter dated June 13, 2013.
It will take at least three to four months before a new company will manage the springs. It could take longer. It is a governmental process after all.
What’s next? Well, dozens of people are out of work meaning less cash flow into North Port’s and Sarasota County’s economy. It also means the people who travel to this Southwest Florida attraction won’t be spending their money in the local economy.
Is there a silver lining? Maybe a thin, small one. From a geological and ecological perspective, the springs will not have human activity in it for several months. Perhaps this down time will permit a rejuvenation. [Remember, my degree’s in Earth Science so I know a little bit about these things.]
A Smart Marketer – An Alternative to Warm Mineral Springs
There’s a smart marketer out there and they represent Days Inn Fort Myers Springs Resort. On Sunday, they responded via Twitter to users who mentioned Warm Mineral Springs touting their springs as an alternative. I’ve never heard of them but looks like they offer two mineral soaking pools which look a little bit more civilized than the ones in North Port. Meaning, it’s an actual pool vs. natural setting. But, maybe it’s a viable alternative for those looking for a soak. (18051 South Tamiami Trail, Fort Myers, Fla.)
Time for Rejuvenation
When Warm Mineral Springs reopens, it deserves a celebration unlike any it has seen. Maybe the Sarasota County powers can arranged for the area’s celebrity spokesman Nik Wallenda to walk across this fountain of youth. Or, maybe famed basketball announcer and “Voice of Sarasota” recipient Dick Vitale can shout out, “Warm Mineral Springs is awesome, baby!” during a broadcast.
Or, how about some local business partnering? Maybe there’s a connection between North Port’s Lolablue – nationally recognized and makers of rockin’ paraben-free, paraffin-free, sulfate-free and phthalate-free beauty products. How about a Fountain of Youth body scrub or soap using some of those 51 minerals found in the springs? The minerals were already being extracted for food and spa products. (Some historians believe this is the fabled Fountain of Youth Spanish explorer Ponce de Leon was searching for.)
It’s beyond disappointing Warm Minerals Springs is closed but it’s time to move forward, think ahead and act smart. Let’s hope the elected powers get their act together. It’s not time to rush and get the springs open, that would be irresponsible. It’s time to put together a realistic and smart plan for the future of the springs. A plan that balances its delicate ecology and economic potential.