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September 11, 2022 by Barbara


Dear Readers…. Below is an email I sent to Town Mayor Chris Vincent, Vice Mayor Edmund Malkoon, Commissioner Buz Oldaker, Commissioner  Theo Poulopolous, Commissioner Randy Strauss as well as Town Manager Linda Conners, Deputy Town Manager Ken Rubach et al…. today…..


Mayor, Commissioners-

It has come to my attention that once again there are a minority of people who are pushing their views of the plaza use to you in order to remove Aruba Beach Cafe from retaining their outdoor dining on a portion of the plaza.

I have no doubt that they would find out from their hotel patrons, neighbors and the majority of residents, neighboring residents and tourists both in our town and beyond that the pairing of our ocean front plaza and Aruba Beach Cafe are actually combining the two major landmarks we are known for along with the pier.

On the agenda for 9/14/2022 is to approve the archiving of our social media.

If you look at these archives you will see Aruba Beach Cafe in first or second place with the ocean plaza of photos taken by those using social media along with public relations photos and articles capturing our town.

Go to any specialty shop, photographer and art vendor or store and you will find Aruba Beach Cafe postcards, sketches, paintings and household items that change from place to place assuring its place as our town destination landmark.

Aruba Beach Cafe anchors our town and our downtown restaurants and has done so from our lean days to the present day that affords us all with much coveted parking revenue that you all marvel at year after year.

Add to that the income this town enjoys from the income we derive from Aruba Beach Cafe both from taxes and from their patrons who surely expand their patronage to other businesses in our town.

Aruba Beach Cafe under the management of Peggy Mohler has proven throughout their time in the plaza with their outdoor dining that they go over and beyond with the town in maintaining the plaza far beyond their designated area. 

They have happily and helpfully made sure to not impede or impact the town’s events in the plaza. In fact, they have supported and supplied assistance to elevate each event as you can all attest to.

It is time to laud Aruba Beach Cafe for being the first rate example of true public- private urban planning that urban planners on every level strive for.

I look forward to seeing all of you join the majority in making sure that Aruba Beach Cafe knows it is a LBTS treasure with a long overdue proclamation that solidifies it and the assurance of full support for retaining their plaza dining!

Barbara Cole

It is time for this town commission, administration, staff and residents to proclaim Aruba Beach Cafe as the landmark we all know it is and to support it as such….

More to come……


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May 12, 2022 by Barbara



Dear Readers…..Did we witness a reprieve or a do-over….and we can get on with it?….
Tuesday night’s LBTS Town Commission meeting was just a scintilla size improvement over the previous two meetings with our newly seated commission……
Again on this agenda was 12B to revisit and /or to continue to allow Aruba Beach Cafe outdoor dining in the Ocean Plaza …… It was put on by Commissioner Oldaker, a vocal opponent to allowing Aruba the space ….A careful read of his agenda item put forth a short- term reprieve to ” transition” out….With that…. Commissioner Oldaker tried to rewrite history of what took place on April 26th….. in my opinion and  if that wasn’t bad enough …..he proceeded to put his new fellow Commissioner Poloupoulous on the hot seat with Oldaker’s interpretation of this writer and others calling for a separation of what Poloupolous can and cannot vote on…. Which is exactly what was rectified following this unnecessary time wasting diatribe!….
If you were in the hall you heard the groans loud and clear that Oldaker’s “ line of questioning “ was a bust and you witnessed Commission Polopolous’ robust response to it clearly indicating he was none too pleased to be put in this position especially with what Poloupolous had planned and carried out once this finally concluded…
After this painful droning on by Oldaker that has become his M. O.  ….Commissioner Poloupolous finally did what this writer and so many others gave been calling for and did indeed separate out Aruba thus allowing him to vote due to his having no conflict in doing so requiring him to abstain…..
He seconded Commissioner Strauss’ motion for Aruba to continue for 6 months……
Unfortunately, the commission again confused and with no real guidance from the Town attorney overlooked that they could in fact have put forth a year extension due to the agenda item for Aruba allowing for it as it was not designated under the same extraordinary circumstances 6 month requirement the downtown restaurants were per the agenda item they fell under….
Commissioner Poloupolous offered up the year extension but it went fell on deaf ears and was not enacted…. A big mistake and real missed opportunity that could have gone a long way toward compensating Aruba for the unnecessary blind-sighting thrust upon them by the Town manager…
The vote was called and passed 4-1 with Oldaker surprisingly voting with the majority…..Vice Mayor Malkoon voted against…. This writer believes he only joined to be on the prevailing side which allows for him to bring it back and further torture us all with his long winded  pontifications..that repeatedly run counter to those he swore to represent…
Commissioner Poloupolous then went on to ask the Town Attorney that he be allowed to separate out Mulligans Restaurant ( a family benefit connection) from the rest of the downtown restaurants in order to vote on their extension which he did ….This should have been the case from the get- go of his taking his place on the dais in March and  preventing the ensuing fiasco we all witnessed from the previous two commission meetings and the unnecessary fallout that resulted from not separating conflict properties from non- conflict properties…
Our… Town attorney who has been in her position since 2009…..should have been advising for the separation of properties and of issues concerning Commissioner Popoloupolous’ conflict properties from non- conflict properties before any items were addressed rather than six weeks in and the Commissioner asking ( although it was certainly planned ahead of the dais exchange) it be allowed!…. What a disservice to this commissioner, the dais, the business owners and the residents!…. Maybe it’s time to look for another Town attorney….as it seems that being in this position too long has diminishing returns….as we saw with the last longtime Town attorney we dealt with prior to 2008…..
This separation can and must continue throughout Commissioner Popoloupolous’ time on the commission to assure us we will have the full representation of all 5 commission votes and to assure his required abstaining does not adversely impact the businesses or the Town unnecessarily….
Let’s hope this puts an end to the massive time consuming mess we all witnessed last month and we can get on with the much desired and wanted upgrade of added and integrated dining space in the plaza and downtown and not an overblown  pie- in- the sky- redevelopment scheme …..that is not needed….
This separation of voting allowing for the 5 commission votes came along with the surprising but much needed appointment of Public Works Director Ken Rubach as Deputy Town Manager….He will now be the point person in charge of  the Ocean Plaza/ Downtown Revitalization / CIP ….. This should rectify the ongoing insufficiencies and debacles brought about by Town Manager Connors inability to lead as her predecessors Hoffman and Bentley!…
Unlike Connors, Rubach has the experience and the personality to be a Town manager…in my opinion…
One final note… it is now time for real guidance from our Town attorney on procedures on the dais for this commission when it comes to motions, seconds and discussion … She used to provide it and now seems to sit back and does nothing … why?…. Too long in her job?…..
Monday May 16,2022 at 6:30 the third community outreach for downtown takes place in Jarvis Hall … No telling what this will unfold …. Fingers crossed!….
In the meantime the massive amount of people for the extension of Outdoor dining in the Ocean Plaza and our Downtown can not let down their guard and must keep up on its progress to make sure that this commission and this administration follow through with what was and is clearly non- wavering overwhelming support!….
More to come…..
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