Tickets are going fast for the Sanibel Historical Museum & Village Gala Celebration, marking the organization’s 40th anniversary, to be held at the Sanibel Community House on Tuesday, February 20 starting at 5pm.


The unforgettable evening will also feature the premiere of a captivating documentary on the history of hurricanes on Sanibel, titled “Wreckage, Resilience & Recovery: The History of Hurricanes on Sanibel & Captiva.”  Directed by local documentarian Ken Sneeden, the film was in the works well before Hurricane Ian roared on shore in 2022.


Three local television meteorologists – Robert Van Winkle, Rob Duns, and Zach Maloch – will be in attendance as very special guests and will share their hurricane memories throughout the night.


Tickets are $150 each and are available at the Sanibel Historical Museum & Village’s website at  Cocktails & heavy Hors d’oeuvres will be served throughout the night.


Sneeden’s documentary, “Wreckage, Resilience & Recovery” delves into the captivating history of hurricanes that have shaped the narrative of Sanibel and Captiva islands. Sneeden’s storytelling prowess promises an engaging exploration of the challenges and triumphs our community has faced.


The three local meteorologists will add additional texture to the storytelling of the night.  Robert Van Winkle served as chief meteorologist for 14 years at NBC2, covering Hurricanes Charley, Wilma, and Irma, before retiring in 2018.  Rob Duns joined NBC2 in 2014, forecasting through Irma and Ian, and serves as midday meteorologist.  Zach Maloch returned in 2023 to WINK News as morning anchor, after a previous stint at WINK from 2016 to 2019.


Adding a touch of history to the celebration, gladiolus and rubies – symbolic of a 40th Anniversary –

will take center stage. Fort Myers, once known as the gladiolus capital of the world, had gladiolus farms in the Iona district, contributing significantly to the region’s agricultural heritage.


Corporate sponsorships and annual family members are also available.  To buy tickets, to make a gift of support towards Sanibel’s history, or for more information on the event, please contact executive director Mark Harmon at [email protected] or 239-472-4648.