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Hey America! The Love Starts in Cortez, Florida

Hey America! The Love Starts in Cortez, Florida

| Sande Caplin |

The Swordfish Grill & Tiki Bar in Cortez is more than just a fine dining establishment with great food and an amazing staff. They are truly stewards of the community. When Bob Slicker took over as General Manager 5 years ago, it was more than just a job. It was and is a vehicle to support and give back to the community. Last year alone the Swordfish Grill raised $147,000 for various schools, organizations and individuals in need.

One thing that makes them stand out as exemplary is the fact that whenever they hold a benefit or charity event, 100% of the profit is given to the cause. “Unlike other bars and restaurants, I can’t feel good about profiting off someone else’s misfortune.”  Bob then went on to explain that he had been in an accident and a local bar held a benefit for him to help with his medical bills. “They held a benefit for me and then kept all the money that was donated.” Since then it has been his mission to give back as much as possible to the community that had once tried to support him when he needed it most.

 At the annual “Cooking for Kids” fundraiser held by IMG Academies to benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters, they won the “People’s Choice Award” three years running for their chef’s creations at that event. They have hosted numerous benefits for locals in need over the years. It all really started back when Bob was still just a bartender and began hosting his now famous (or infamous if you’ve ever heard any of Bob’s jokes) “Happy Hour Extravaganza”. It evolved into a year-round weekly event that benefits a variety of local charities with raffles, school supply and food drives. As the host of the weekly event held from 4-6 every Wednesday, Bob often closes the festivities with a call to action “If you can’t get involved or donate today, then go home and help a neighbor or friend in need, you can’t imagine how good it feels”.

Ted Stevens, Crab Man and the Swordfish Grill TeamIn addition to supporting local Cortez Organizations like Fishing for Freedom, the Florida Maritime Museum and F.I.S.H., the list of organizations has grown to include local schools, the Suncoast Blood Bank, HOPE Family Services, F.E.L.T., the Anna Maria Island Community Center, the Anna Maria Privateers, the Blessing Bags Project, the Hernando DeSoto Historical Society and many many more. They even have a scholarship program for local students. “If you want to make a difference in your world, start locally. Help your local schools, charities and the people in your neighborhood” The Swordfish Grill does all of that and more consistently, year after year.

The biggest and best fundraiser of the year is approaching fast. “Giving Back” will take place on September 14. Only 150 tickets are sold for this event which features great food and drinks, raffles, both live and silent auctions all with the backdrop of an amazing music lineup featuring TC and Randy, Doug Deming and the Jewel Tones and Ted Stevens and the Doo-Shots. This event sells out every year, but there are still a few tickets remaining so stop in the Swordfish Grill and get yours before they’re gone. The Swordfish Grill is located at 4628 119th Street in Cortez. You can also call 941-798-2035 to get your tickets. The event is presented by The Swordfish Grill, The Sarasota Post and Sande Caplin and Associates.

If you can’t attend this event “then go home and help a neighbor or friend in need, you can’t imagine how good it feels”

photos from The Sarasota Post

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