Proceeds to support nonprofit’s military outreach efforts

Matanzas on the Bay hosted its inaugural “Wine on the Waterfront” fundraising event on Nov. 11, raising $6,000 to support the mission of Operation Open Arms, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the care and treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in military personnel. Event proceeds will support Operation Open Arms’ efforts to treat active, foreign duty U.S. service personnel to special acts of kindness, unique outreach services, and PTSD mental health care within 30 days of returning home from deployment.

The Veterans Day event featured an intimate food and wine tasting on the outside deck of Matanzas on the Bay, accompanied by Matanzas on the Bay’s popular waterfront views, prize drawings, and live music from local singer-songwriter and The Voice contestant, Sheena Brook. Throughout the evening, guests enjoyed a unique sampling of premier wines from the regions of Argentina, California, Chile, France and Italy, skillfully paired with fresh, local seafood prepared by Matanzas on the Bay and other locally sourced cuisine.

“We are incredibly thankful for the many men and women who have selflessly dedicated their lives to protecting our freedom, and we are honored to show our gratitude by supporting the important mission of Operation Open Arms,” said Tony Coppolino, general manager of Matanzas on the Bay. “We are thankful for all of the guests, volunteers, sponsors and supporters who came together to help make our inaugural Wine on the Waterfront such a success, and we look forward to many future events that will continue to make a difference within our community and in the lives of our military.”

Pioneered by Capt. John “GiddyUp” Bunch, for the past 13 years, Operation Open Arms has continued to make a difference in the lives of more than 3,600 U.S. troops returning from combat or foreign duty stations, totaling $14.2 million in direct tangible benefits.

Matanzas on the Bay and Petey’s Upper Deck are best known for waterfront views, fresh seafood and old Florida ambience and is located at 416 Crescent St. on Fort Myers Beach on Estero Bay. The restaurant serves lunch and dinner daily, as well as caters to special occasions and private parties. As part of its commitment to use as many locally sourced products as possible, Matanzas on the Bay offers seafood from Blue Star Seafood Company, produce from Pair-A-Dice Produce, rum from the Wicked Dolphin Rum Distillery and draft beer from Fort Myers Brewery. Its upstairs sports bar, Petey’s Upper Deck, is popularly known for its Dave’s Dockside Pizza, named the best pizza on Fort Myers Beach. The restaurant is located adjacent to the Matanzas Bayside Inn waterfront accommodations, just steps away from the Fort Myers Beach entertainment district. Free car parking and boat dockage is available. To book your party or for more information, call 239-463-3838 or visit www.MatanzasontheBay.com.