Organizers of last month’s Cortez Fishing Festival announced it netted $113,000 from the 2-day event.
Dedicated volunteers and sunshine brought in about 28,000 people. Proceeds far exceeded expectations and almost doubled last year’s $60,000.
The first festival initiated to purchase 95 acres of historic waterfront raised $98,000.
The funds created the Florida Institute of Saltwater Heritage (FISH) Preserve, dedicated to retaining the character and heritage of one of Florida’s last traditional waterfront communities within a natural environment. More privately owned land may be added to the preserve as it becomes available. The old wharves, fish houses, 1912 schoolhouse and 1896 Burton’s Store are in the process of restoration.