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Pine Island Pizza donates $1,319 to Beacon of H.O.P.E.

October 7, 2015
By ED FRANKS ( , Pine Island Eagle

When Melissa and Pete Marsala opened Pine Island Pizza last month, they were determined to give back to the community. Last Friday they donated $1,319 from their tip jar to the Beacon of H.O.P.E.

"What's really great about this is this will go into our 'matching funds' account," Beacon of H.O.P.E. president Elsie Stearns said. "So this $1,319 turns into $2,678."

It was a long and winding road that led the Marsalas to Pine Island.

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On hand for the check presentation at Pine Island Pizza were, from left, Dot Mahan, Elsie Stearns, co-owners Melissa and Pete Marsala, Pastor Roger Lemke and Vinnie Caro.


"I was born in Brooklyn, New York ,but raised in York, Pennsylvania," Melissa said. "My dad had a pizzeria inside York Mall for 27 years until he retired. Then we all moved to Nevada for a while and in 2011 my husband and I purchased a house in Cape Coral.

"We were in the construction business but we were always interested in opening a pizzeria," she continued, "but wanted my father to be involved. When he agreed, we decided to find a location and here we are."

It took 181 days from the day they applied for the permit to opening the doors and serving their first pizza.

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"We're very grateful to be here," she said. "This community has been so welcoming that we wanted to give back. That's where the idea of the tip jar came from. Everything that people put into the tip jar goes to a local charity. This is our first month and this was the previous location of the Beacon of H.O.P.E., so naturally we thought of them."

Because October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Pine Island Pizza will donate this month's tips to From Our Hearts. Pine Island From Our Hearts Inc. consists of a small group of island residents whose only focus is to raise funds to provide breast cancer screening and treatment for any qualified island resident in need of financial assistance.

Pine Island Pizza serves round pizza in 10-inch, 14-inch and 16-inch sizes and a square 16"-inch Sicilian-style pizza.

"We also have specialty pizzas, and pizza by the slice," she said. "Also strombolis, calzones, and salads."

"We are very grateful to Melissa and Pete for their generosity," said Elsie Stearns of the Beacon of H.O.P.E. "This is a very generous gift for a business that has only been here a short time."

Pine Island Pizza is at 5465 Pine Island Road. For more information, call 239-283-PZZA (7992).



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