The Brown Team at Downing-Frye Realty
RICK BROWN: (239) 322-2313
BRENDA BOOTH: (239) 287-8834
Most communities in Southwest Florida pack their calendars with events during the winter months. Come summer and the agenda is practically empty. Not at Bella Terra in Estero where the summer calendar is even fuller than in the winter. The events crammed into the tiny schedule boxes range from activities for senior citizens to children to entire families. On the turquoise June calendar there is everything from water aerobics, Mah Jongg, Rummikub and poker to hair braiding and Weenie Wednesday.
Sandy Coates brings her three daughters to visit their grandmother at Bella Terra all summer because her community practically shuts down in the summer and she wants to continue with an active lifestyle.
“We come here because there is nothing going on where we live,” Coates said. “We come to all the pool parties. This is where most people want to be.”
Coates says her mother spends the summer playing hand and foot, canasta and mah-jongg.
“She’s literally here all day,” Coates said.
Nikki Olsen, assistant activities director at Bella Terra, said the community is not seasonal so there need to be things for people to do year-round.
“We actually have more in the summer than we do in the winter,” she said.
One of the most popular summer events is Weenie Wednesday. Every other Wednesday the community has a big cookout by the pool.
“That’s a big one,” Olsen said. “People really like to come to that.”
Zumba is also a popular summer class and so is hand and foot.
“They love their hand and foot,” Janel Wisniewski, administrative assistant said about the popular card game. “They just fill that room up.”
There are cocktail hours and mommy and me exercise time. There’s bocce ball and Mexican Train. The community has a jewelry-making workshop and a Trolley and Pub Crawl all filling the calendar.
Kelly Leonard, activities director, expects about 450 people to take part in the community’s July 4th parade that ends with a pool party.
“It’s a great community,” Leonard said. “We try to keep them as busy as we can over the summer.”
Bella Terra is a 999-acre community off Corkscrew Road east of I-75. The northern Italian-style architecture community with its central fountain and clock tower features a 7,000-square-foot clubhouse with a fitness center and resort style pool and spa, along with tennis and bocce ball, ball fields, beach volleyball, basketball and even an inline skate park. The executive, manor and estate homes range in size from 1,340 to 3,800 square feet with prices from the high $190,000s to more than $450,000. All homes include granite countertops, wood cabinets, paver drive, walkway and lanai, diagonal tile floors, concrete roof tile and many other features. There are about 1,625 homes in the community that will have 1,800 residences at build-out