FORT MYERS, FL (October 22, 2016) – More than 80 Johnson Engineering employees, their families, friends, the Friends of Lover’s Key (FOLKS) and park staff. The group pitched in on Saturday, October 22, at 9 a.m. for the 14th consecutive year. This group volunteers their time to preserve one of Florida’s natural gems, the park which bears their founder’s name, Carl E. Johnson State Park commonly referred to as Lovers Key.
This event is an opportunity for Johnson Engineering employees to make a difference in the community, while also paying tribute to the company’s founder, Carl E. Johnson. Johnson Engineering’s Coastal Cleanup began in 2003 in honor of Carl E. Johnson, whose efforts in the late 1960’s, played a major role in making this popular recreational area a reality. He conceived the idea of connecting the islands with a causeway from the south end of Fort Myers Beach to Bonita Beach, helped get most of the land donated from several large landowners, surveyed and designed the road, overcoming a variety of obstacles along the way. Today, Lovers Key/Carl E. Johnson State Park has become a world-famous tourist destination.
The company’s employees are proud of their roots and intrigued by the historical connection, so they come together each year to do their part in keeping the park looking its best. The teams dedicate the morning to cleaning and fixing up numerous areas throughout the park including removing/replacing a stairway, removing and replacing sod, exotic vegetation removal, native planting, trail trimming, and painting tram bridges. After the morning’s efforts, they enjoy a BBQ lunch in the beach pavilion, provided by the local Fort Myers beach restaurant Truly Scrumptious.
The volunteer’s efforts not only support Lovers Key State Park by keeping it looking its best for many visitors, but as a company we also choose to support the local Fort Myers Beach businesses. Throughout the years we have established relationships with Greater Fort Myers Beach businesses who sponsor our event by providing raffle items. As raffle prizes entice our employees to volunteer, they are also a great way to encourage local employees to patron the Fort Myers Beach businesses. Our raffle sponsor this year was Wyndham Garden Fort Myers Beach hotel, who provided a 3 day/2 night stay at their hotel. In addition, our caterer, Truly Scrumptious, donates extra lunch items which makes for a fulfilling meal for the volunteers after the morning’s effort.
This annual event’s volunteer efforts were previously recognized by The Friends of Florida State Parks with the Outstanding Volunteer Team of the Year Award for exceptional service and support.