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Initiative to Protect Jekyll Island
IPJI Newsletter Spring 2015
In This Issue
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Dear IPJI Members,


We hope you find the Spring 2015 edition of IPJI's Newsletter interesting and informative.

We welcome your comments and appreciate your support of IPJI's effort to preserve Jekyll's traditional character, wildlife habitats and natural communities.

David and Mindy Egan
Initiative to Protect Jekyll Island

New Jekyll Residents!
Photo taken on the Pine Lakes Golf Course by Mindy Egan
Photo by James Holland, retired Altamaha Riverkeeper

"Like" IPJI on Facebook, please!

Please visit the Protect Jekyll Island Facebook page to see what's happening on Jekyll Island and to participate in the lively discussions that take place on our page. We are nearing 4,000 "Likes" and hope to continue to expand IPJI's FB presence. Please "Like" our page if you've not already done so.

Click here to visit the Protect Jekyll Island FB page.  

Commercialization of Jekyll's Beach


The recently opened Jekyll Westin Hotel has drawn public criticism for setting up a motorized 'beach services' rental operation on Jekyll's beach. The beach amenities, which consist of chairs, umbrellas and tables that are stored near the Jekyll Island Museum, are being transported back and forth to the Westin by a towed flat-bed trailer that enters the beach from an access point near Great Dunes Park. Read more.

Redevelopment Projects Proliferate on Jekyll Island


A significant number of redevelopment projects on Jekyll Island have been completed this year and more are either underway or in the planing stages. Read more.

Jekyll Island's Redevelopment: A Young Teen's Perspective  

Save Jekyll Island!

My name is Allison Dailey and I go to Cartersville Middle School. I am thirteen and in seventh grade. My family and I go to Jekyll Island every spring break and occasionally during the summer. We usually stay on the north end of the island at the campground.

What I love about Jekyll is that it's very calm and has no major partying like other beaches, for example Panama City. My dad had been coming to Jekyll with his family for years. Back when he was my age, there was very little commercial building, not even a gas station. Now there is a huge hotel and village blocking the view of the beach when you come on the island. There are two more hotels on the way for the beach village. If the people of Georgia let these types of buildings be built, then prices are going to go up and the scenery is going to be ruined.

Currently you can ride your bikes all over Jekyll and see raccoons and deer. Mother Nature is everywhere. When construction goes up, Nature is the loser. What I think the Jekyll Island Authority should do is add more little things, like the Horton pond project, which was a great addition, in my opinion. The Horton project added a walking trail around the pond and protection to the environment. I know your thinking "how has this added protection?" Well, when my family and I went to Horton Pond about a year back you could get as close as you wanted and might provoke the alligators. Now there is a fence, a warning sign about alligators, information for sightseeing, and just a relaxing chance to walk and take pictures.

I was really upset about all the buildings that I saw and the construction I heard as I was riding my bike. The neighboring island is St. Simons, which is not a long drive away. It has lots of shops and buildings. If you have ever been to St. Simons, you know how crowded and hectic it is. Do we really want to see that on Jekyll too?  

Goodbye to an Affordable Jekyll Island?

The JIA's official policy on affordability states that: "The Jekyll Island Authority will assure that private providers of hotel accommodations on Jekyll Island provide a range of rooms that include mid-market (3-star travel guide rating) and a substantial number of moderately-priced hotels (2-star and 1-star rated)...." Read more.
Westin Hotel is
 67 feet at its peak

Building Height Guidelines Reduced for Jekyll


Over the past few years, IPJI has urged the JIA to reduce Jekyll's building height limit, which allowed for structures up to 72 feet tall. Pointing out that Glynn County, which includes neighboring Sea Island and St. Simons Island, limits building height to 45 feet, IPJI contended that allowing commercial structures to dominate the natural landscape by virtue of their height would detract from Jekyll's natural beauty and degrade the 'Jekyll experience.'


Much to IPJI's delight, the JIA board has now reduced the maximum height limit for buildings to 45 feet. While this was welcomed news, it remains to be seen if the JIA will apply these guidelines uniformly to all future hotel development projects.

Horton Pond: Nature in All Its Glory


Nature-based recreational opportunities on Jekyll Island took a step forward in December of 2014 with the opening of the Horton Pond wildlife viewing area. An idea conceived by Al Tate, who recently retired from Atlanta's Fernbank Science Center, the Horton Pond facility includes a viewing platform, a man-made island for wildlife, a half-mile nature trail, educational signs, and a parking area. Host to fish, turtles, alligators and a variety of birds, Horton Pond is a must visit for nature lovers.


The Horton Pond site is located on North Beachview Drive, directly across from the main entrance to Villas by the Sea.

4-H Center Demolished: New Facility to Open in 2016

In December of 2014, the Jekyll Island 4-H Center closed its doors after having served over one-million youngsters since its opening in 1983. It will be replaced by the Jekyll Island Youth Conference and Learning Center, a $16 million facility to be operated by the JIA and funded by the state. Read more. 
Jekyll's Deer - Safe for Now

At the January 2015 JIA board meeting, a decision was made by the board's Conservation Committee to table the July 2014 Deer Management Report (DMR) written by conservation director Ben Carswell and to authorize further study of Jekyll's deer population as well as the impacts they may be having on Jekyll's natural communities.
Read more. 
Jekyll Island Mosaic

The Jekyll Island Foundation, a nonprofit corporation established in 1999 for the purpose of assisting with conservation, education and historic preservation efforts on Jekyll Island, is currently working on a new initiative - the transformation of the Jekyll Island Museum. Read more. 

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Scenes from IPJI's Annual Meeting

This year's Annual Meeting of IPJI featured Dr. Tony Martin,
who dazzled the audience with his presentation on the tracks and traces left by creatures that live on or visit Jekyll's beach. A professor in the Department of Environmental Science at Emory University and author of Life Traces of the Georgia Coast, Dr. Martin is a frequent visitor to Jekyll for pleasure and field study. View photos.
Jekyll Photos to Brighten Your Day

Click on the following links for a treat from IPJI's Photo Gallery. Turn on your speakers, use the full screen option, and enjoy!

Jekyll Images by Meg McCarthy

A Tribute to Jekyll Island by the Odom Family 
Thank You SCRAWLS for Your Creative Genius

Cartoons in this newsletter were drawn by Sam C. Rawls, aka SCRAWLS.
Sam has amused IPJI's members over the years with scores of satirical cartoons on various Jekyll issues.


Sam is the creator of the syndicated comic strip, Pop's Place and the author of several humorous books, including How to Speak Bulldawg. Click here for more information about Sam.


Sam's love for Jekyll prompted him to send cartoons to IPJI. Click here to view a collection of Sam's Jekyll 'toons.'


Thank you, Sam, for your creative support of the protect Jekyll effort and for making us smile!
Initiative to Protect Jekyll Island Newsletter