Editor’s Note: Summer Loving
We’ve hit double digits! I can’t believe this is Flamingo’s tenth edition. Every issue is the result of an intense creative process, each emerging with its own distinct personality. Around the office we unofficially refer to each volume by what’s on the cover. “The Kelsey,” issue No. 2, one of my favorite covers, features an image of Florida native Kelsey Magennis in a blue bathing suit paddling a wooden boat in the Santa Fe River. The goal for the cover of that first travel issue was to recreate a vintage photo from a Sports Illustrated shoot that took place in Wakulla Springs in 1981. Only a handful of these issues remain. Then we have “The Gregg,” issue No. 7, bearing an actual vintage photo of the late great Gregg Allman, which we secured from longtime Allman Brothers Band photographer Sidney Smith.
Our current issue No. 10, (aka “Thunderball”), celebrates travel, showcasing an amazing over-under shot of Thunderball Grotto, which is located in the Exumas and flows with crystalline water and scores of tropical fish. Exploration of the hidden cavern, named for the James Bond movie filmed there, can only be done by those who know how to access it, either by jumping in from high above at the opening of the rock formation or by swimming in from a small gap at the water’s edge. It’s just one of the many secrets we uncovered in this issue about our beautiful neighbor, the Bahamas. In her story “Islands in the Stream,” writer Nila Do Simon looks at the deep connections Floridians have to the majestic archipelago, which many view as an extension of our state.
Then, we head back home to Gasparilla Island on the Gulf Coast, to the tiny village nestled at its center, Boca Grande—not to be confused with Boca Raton. In her piece “The Elephant, the Temp and the Tarpon,” Katie Hendrick Vincent explores the upscale hideaway and its history as one of the world’s top fishing destinations for the Silver King.
In between all the boating, diving and fun in the sun, we hope you will pause and turn your thoughts to that blazing natural resource in the sky, which inspired the nickname of our state. In his story, “Here Comes the Sun,” writer Michael Adno takes a look at how one man’s determination to create the solar-powered town of Babcock Ranch has sparked a growing wave of change in how Floridians think about energy production and consumption.
Another pressing issue on the minds of Floridians this summer is: who will our next governor be? In her piece “Welcome to Grahamelot,” Diane Roberts digs into the life and times of Gwen Graham, the only female candidate in the race. (To be sure, there are other famous Graham women in her family.)
And lastly, nearly four months have passed since the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shocked the world. To say the debate over the event was heated doesn’t begin to express the level of raw pain felt by so many. In this issue I write about my time at Douglas High School and the significant impact the shooting had on me. When the tragedy first happened, we asked readers to submit essays expressing their thoughts for our online series, Power of the Pen. I hope my piece, “Fly Like an Eagle,” inspires some of you to revisit that day, share your story and commit to doing your part to help make our country safer for everyone.
Flamingo No. 10 is filled with thunderous journeys of the heart and the mind. May it surprise you and take you to places you never knew you wanted to go.