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SOUTHWEST FLORIDA : MangoMania Tropical Fruit Fair this weekend




















July 15, 2015
By ED FRANKS (efranks@breezenewspapers.com) , 
Pine Island Eagle









After months of planning and right in time for harvest season, the annual MangoMania Tropical Fruit Fair will be held at the German American Social Club.





Sponsored by the Greater Pine Island Chamber of Commerce, MangoMania runs Saturday, July 18, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday July 19, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 



The German American Social Club is located at 2101 Pine Island Road in Cape Coral, just east of Matlacha.



"The purpose of this annual event is to showcase all that Pine Island has to offer and to promote island growers and businesses," 
Chamber Executive Director Jennifer Jennings said.




 "This year's 2015 event will start off with the singing of the national anthem by 'Trailer Park Barbie' and then the Pledge of Allegiance will be recited with the colors being presented by Pine Island American Legion Post 136."



Attendees will be greeted by 2015 Mango Queen Jonna Bouchard and MangoMania mascot Matt Mango.








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Bouchard will be running all the kid's contests and games, such as the hat decorating contest and the hat parade, followed by Mr. Mango Head contest, (where you decorate a mango), Mango juggling, Mango Corn Hole and the ever popular the Hula Hoop contest.








Susan Clark from Tampa entered the adult pie eating contest in 2014.


"Well I didn't win but it was fun,"
she said.

 "I came with 6 of my friends to spend the day and eat mangoes. It was a blast. The people running the event are so helpful and nice. We learned a lot about mangoes and took home two full bags of fresh Pine Island mangoes to our home in Tampa. Tampa was one of the areas that had a shortage in 2014, so we were happy to see MangoMania had mangoes like they advertised. We have already made plans to come back next year and get our supply of fresh Pine Island mangoes and try out the pie eating contest again, hope to win this year."




"Last year's MangoMania was the best in a decade. Clear skies and an overwhelming supply of Pine Island M
angoes," said Steve Timcak, past president of the Greater Pine Island Chamber of Commerce and owner of Island Visions Gallery. 






"I worked the Tasting Table during the two day event, we never stopped cutting mangoes and the people lined up for hours both days. We offered our visitors four to five different varieties of mangoes, we will be offering the same this year. We got mangoes."



The air at the event is always full of the smells of cooking shrimp tacos, crab cakes, pulled pork, smoked sausage, barbecue chicken and much more. 


There will be freshly cut coconuts full of coconut milk from J.M.C. Landscaping. Along with the fresh cut coconuts will be freshly cut pineapples, filled to the top with pineapple juice. 

If you would like to give your fresh coconut or pineapple drink a little kick, visit Dave and Patty in the beverage area and they can add your favorite shot of Rum, Tito's Handmade Vodka or Tequila.




The event offers a huge variety of foods, drinks, entertainment, contests for all ages, games for the kids and the Free Tasting table, which you won't find anywhere else.



Mary Ann Frank from Tampa said, "We brought our entire family plus 12 of our closest friends to last year's event and plan on doing the same in 2015. We saw the article in our local papers and had nothing else that sounded like this much fun, so we all got into a van and car and headed to Pine Island. We are happy to say the event delivered what they advertised, which isn't always the case when you plan a trip. We have already decided to attend 2015 MangoMania. What a great bunch of people."




This year's event includes: food and recipe contests, mango games and contests for kids of all ages, food and beverages, mango tropical fruit specialty food and beverages, free mango tasting table, arts and crafts vendors, gifts, T-shirts, educational talks about tropical plants, palms and much more.



"Checkout the main stage on the 18th & 19th around 2:30 p.m. for the famous pie eating contests," Jennings said. "We had so many entries last year that we were forced to have two different categories this year, one for the kids and one for the adults. The pie eating contests have gotten so popular everyone wants to be a part of it. Last year there were 20 adults signed up for the pie eating contest, so make sure to get your name on the list early, sign up will be at the beverage ticket area. It's a blast for all who participate in it and even for those who watch."




After a little music and food, there will be time to do some shopping with the local vendors that fill the park: Traders Hitching Post with her unique Native American jewelry, turquoise and silver bracelets all hand crafted; Great Licks Ice Cream with his special recipe of Mango Ice Cream; Paradise Garden with fresh jams and jellies; Olde Fish House Marina, with shrimp tacos and crab cakes; Salt Water Smoke House with barbecue; Cupcake Express, served fresh baked cupcakes right out of the oven; C. W. Fudge Factory, with special flavored popcorn; J.M.C Landscaping with fresh off the tree coconut drinks, mango trees, palms and yard plants; and Pine Island Spice, which sold out in 2014 so get there early. 


In all there will be 100-plus vendors participating in MangoMania 2015.


The Greater Pine Island Chamber of Commerce and the MangoMania Committee has extended a "thank you" to the sponsors of the event - The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel; LCEC (Lee County Electric Company); Tarpon Lodge; The News-Press; Ad&PrintCraft Printing, Marketing; Honc Construction; Budweiser (Suncoast Beverages); Pine Island Eagle/Cape Coral Breeze; Hole in One Golf Carts; Garden St. Portables; and Tito's Handmade Vodka.



Tickets are $5 if purchased in advance and $6 at the gate. Children under 10 years of age are free. Tickets can be purchased at the Greater Pine Island Chamber of Commerce, located at 3640 Pine Island Road, Matlacha or purchase online at mangomaniafl.com.



For more information contact The Greater Pine Island Chamber of Commerce at www.GreaterPineIsland-Chamber.orgwww.MangoMania-FL.com., or call 239-283-0888









- See more at: http://www.pineisland-eagle.com/page/content.detail/id/529489/MangoMania-Tropical-Fruit-Fair-this-weekend.html?nav=5051#sthash.HOvwigwv.dpuf

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Alphonso (mango)
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