While many parts of the country are still experiencing the cold, rain and even snow, residents of the Nature Coast in Florida are blessed with the warmth of sunshine and outside fun year round. Don’t miss these upcoming outdoor events:

Weeki Wachee Egg Hunt
The annual egg hunt at Buccaneer Bay continues this year on Saturday, April 15 from 11am-2pm. Bring the kids and grandkids to celebrate Easter in true Florida style- finding eggs in the natural springs. Don’t forget an Easter egg basket and swim suit! The event is included in the price of admission.

Old Florida Celebration Of The Arts Festival
Historic Cedar Key, ranked among the coolest small towns in the United States, is the place to be April 8-9! The 53rd annual arts festival is a juried art show featuring more than 100 unique artists representing all media- oils, acrylics, ceramics, jewelry-making, photography, sculpture and origami. The festival features children`s art activities, live music, and food vendors serving up culinary delights from fresh local clams to crab cakes, refreshing lemonade and desserts ranging from smoothies to unique key lime cones.

Suncoast Boat Show 2017
The 35th annual Suncoast Boat Show takes place in downtown Sarasota on April 21-23, 2017, at Marina Jack’s, #2 Marina Plaza, in Sarasota,. Enjoy the great outdoors while pricing and comparing hundreds of boats from the Gulfcoast’s leading boat dealers. See various types and styles all in one place.  Cruisers, Runabouts, Bowriders, Sportfishers, Center Consoles, Motor Yachts, Inflatables and more. Shop tents full of electronics, accessories, jewelry, art and clothing all in a festive atmosphere with food, drinks, music and much more. Plenty of downtown parking. There is no better time than right now for a new boat!

6th Annual Florida Blueberry Festival
Visit the historic downtown streets of Brooksville to enjoy Fresh Florida Blueberries, Fresh Blueberry Pies, and Tasty Festival Fare on April 22-23. Have a glass of Blueberry Wine at the Island Grove Wine Café. Meander through the art exhibits and listen to entertainment by tribute bands along with an array of other talented musical and entertainment acts.

When you live at the community of GlenLakes on the Nature Coast all of these fun activities are at your fingertips. Nestled in the heart of GlenLakes is the newest neighborhood of estate home sites. Located between the 10th, 11th and 12th fairways and sparkling Cypress Lake, each estate home site offers outstanding nature views. Click here for a GlenLakes homebuyer’s guide.

When living in an area like Weeki Wachee, loaded with adventure, activities and beautiful weather year round, it is easy to find exciting, new ways to stay connected in your community. As residents are drawn by the lure of adventure or seek a natural place to decompress, Florida’s Adventure Coast makes it easier for families and communities to connect with each other. It’s time to leave the phones and tablets at home and explore Florida’s Adventure Coast.

The best place in Weeki Wachee to reconnect is Weeki Wachee State Park at the world famous mermaid show.  The mermaids of Weeki Wachee Springs State Park have delighted visitors since 1947. Today, visitors can still witness the magic of the mermaids, take a river boat cruise and canoe or kayak on the Weeki Wachee River. The 538-acre park features a first magnitude spring and a 400-seat submerged theater for watching the live mermaid show.

The eight mile trip from Weeki Wachee Springs State Park northwest to Pine Island Beach borders the vast Chassahowitzka Wildlife Management Area.  Watch the wooded roadside for wildlife such as bald eagle, deer, wild pigs, Osceola wild turkey and more.

Emerge from the trees to a revelation as the expansive salt marsh opens up to you. This Gulf of Mexico border is distinctive to Florida’s Adventure Coast. Splitting down the middle, peaceful and scenic vistas extend from both sides of the roadway.

Soon the road ends at Alfred McKethan Pine Island Park, a great place to stop and spend some time. Grab a seat at this three-acre beach and linger to watch the tide come in or go out while children burn off steam on the playground or chasing seagulls. Grab a snack at Willy’s Tropical Grill.

Make a right turn at the end of Pine Island Drive to nearby Bayport Park for a scenic river or sunset cruise with Bayport River Safari.

Captain Gary will meet you at the pier, welcoming you and your group aboard the River Tale for a comfortable, narrated tour of the pristine Weeki Wachee River. Evenings are perfect for catching a vibrant winter sunset from the water during a leisurely evening cruise.

Choose delightful local dining at the historic Bayport Inn or a nearby Hernando Beach restaurant like Brian’s Place or The Cove.

The residents at GlenLakes know the importance of staying connected as a community.  With the Club House as social hub for friends and family, there are so many ways to turn your neighbors into friends when living at GlenLakes.  Not only do we have many ways to stay connected internally, we have the luxury of being located next to all of the action where these organizations and clubs take place.  The opportunities are endless when living at GlenLakes.  To see what the lifestyle is all about, click here.

 

With innovations enhancing the game of golf, plus the PGA Tour’s thrilling rivalries as the sun sets on the Tiger Era- Golf is hotter, healthier and better than ever. So let us count the ways!

  1. FITTED IRONS ARE A GAME-CHANGER

Fitters say the reason a lot of people hit it sideways is because they haven’t been custom-fit. Trying to figure out the swing with clubs whose length, weight, lie angle, shaft flex or grip size don’t match the body encourages players to make unnatural compensations that prevent them from developing proper mechanics.

  1. THE BENEFITS OF TECHNOLOGY

Many golf courses such as GlenLakes on the Nature Coast offer online tee time booking. Members can see what is available without having to talk to a person on the phone especially when the course is busy. There are also more golf apps than ever before such as thegrint.com to log scores, track your handicap, and even receive a revised index twice monthly.

  1. THE NUMBERS DON’T LIE

Stats gurus have made it easier for Tour pros and average Joes to shoot better scores. Consider: 18-handicappers leave 16 percent of their 10-foot putts below the hole, while Tour pros leave only 7 percent short from that distance. Improving your distance control on putts is a great way to lower your score.

  1. CAN’T READ GREENS? AT LEAST YOU CAN READ BOOKS!

Some great new golf titles including Lucky Boy, the coming-of-age golf novel by Cameron Morfit hit the shelves this year. Claudia Mazzucco tees off with Legendary Lessons, and the USGA’s Official Illustrated Guide to the Rules of Golf offers a new vision of the game.

  1. AFFORDABLE MEMBERSHIP

GlenLakes Golf Membership offers the privileges of a private club—without the typical private club price tag. Members enjoy unlimited tee times as well as the opportunity to play in tournaments and enjoy special events. Membership initiation fees are waived when you purchase a home through the GlenLakes realty office.

The 18-hole, 6,782 yard championship course is the crown jewel of GlenLakes. It’s challenging, beautiful and impeccably maintained. Mature stands of oak and pine, water features, undulating hills and sand traps provide endless variations of play. Complementing the course is an Aqua driving range. After every game enjoy camaraderie at “The 19th Hole”, the main bar & lounge at the clubhouse. For more information, click here.

Original Article.

As Florida’s strawberry harvest winds down, the packinghouses turn their attention to homegrown blueberries. And like the strawberry harvest, the berry growers of West Central Florida hate to miss an opportunity for a party as the harvest celebrations shift from Plant City to Brooksville. Here are a few fun facts about the Florida Blueberry Festival April 16-17 in Brooksville’s downtown square:

  1. You may not think of Florida as blueberry country, but the state is now eighth in the nation in blueberry production. Brooksville is the center of 15 Florida counties that grow blueberries and all are participating in the festival.
  2. The festival offers more than just blueberries. There is something for everyone with over 20 food concessionaires, the Fresh from Florida Market featuring Florida grown blueberries and produce, a car show, street entertainers, 85 artisans in a juried show and 120 retail exhibitors. There is also beer gardens, wine bars, magic shows, dog shows and stilt walkers.
  3. During the week leading up to the festival, artists from across the Tampa Bay area will converge on Brooksville to paint scenes reflecting the natural beauty of Hernando County, somewhat akin to a “Day in the Life” project, only with a paintbrush instead of cameras.
  4. Even without the blueberry, Brooksville/Hernando County is the center of one of Florida’s greatest unspoiled natural regions. Nearby is the Withlacoochee State Forest, named by the World Wildlife Fund as one of the “10 Coolest Places in North America You’ve Never Seen.” The forest is home to what many argue is Florida’s prettiest river for kayaking and canoes, the Withlacoochee River and what may be its best paved bike trail, the 46-mile Withlacoochee Bike Trail.

Lucky for residents of GlenLakes in Hernando County the blueberry festival is a short drive away. GlenLakes homes are designed for easy living and gracious entertaining. Nestled in the heart of the community is the newest neighborhood of estate home sites. Located between the 10th, 11th and 12th fairways and sparkling Cypress Lake, each estate home site offers outstanding views and plenty of room for a beautiful home. For more information on living the Florida lifestyle at GlenLakes, click here.

While many parts of the country head inside during the cold winter months, residents of Weeki Wachee, Florida are blessed with warm weather year round. If you’re lucky enough to be spending the holiday season on the Adventure Coast, here are five not to miss activities:

Chinsegut Hill Retreat- December 5th, 12th, 18th

Come see how the Chinsegut Hill Retreat glows with vintage Christmas charm. Watch a demonstration and learn how Christmas candy was made long ago. Santa Claus is also making appearance. Chinsegut Hill has welcomed many great dignitaries like Thomas Edison, Helen Keller and William Jennings Bryan. But none can compare to the excitement about Old St. Nick.

Candy Cane Acres- Every Fri/Sat of December

Gather your family and friends to enjoy the holiday light display and Christmas Village at Hernando County Fairgrounds. Visit Mrs. Claus’ kitchen and decorate your own cookie, see the Parade of Trees, stop by Santa’s workshop and make a craft to take home, and cuddle up for an old Florida-style sleigh ride.

Breakfast with Santa- December 13th

This is the perfect event for residents of GlenLakes to bring the family from out of town to. The grandchildren can meet the man himself, Santa Claus! This holiday filled breakfast will include an omelet station, French toast, whipped buttermilk biscuits, and many more delicious items.

Holiday Food Drive- December 15th

Food donations are being collected at the GlenLakes Sales Office and will be distributed to local churches. Items needed include boxed/canned meals, soups, jelly, peanut butter, and baby food. After all, it is the season of giving!

 New Years Eve Dinner & Dance- December 31st

Put your dancing shoes on and get ready to ring in the New Year. Residents of GlenLakes are invited to a night of dinner and dancing. The menu will include wild blueberry BBQ’d pork shanks, seaweed relish seared lamb lollipops, assorted petite desserts, and of course a champagne toast at midnight.

The Adventure Coast is ready to spread holiday cheer this winter season! The community of GlenLakes spreads cheer all year long offering an outstanding portfolio of homes designed for easy living and gracious entertaining. Tour a model home and then choose the perfect site for your new home. Nestled in the heart of GlenLakes is the newest neighborhood of estate home sites. Located between the 10th, 11th and 12th fairways and sparkling Cypress Lake, each estate home site offers outstanding views. Click here for a GlenLakes homebuyer’s guide.

800-pounds of gray giant gently breaks the water’s surface with two perfectly round nostrils and many, many whiskers. The warm springs of Citrus County are an extremely popular refuge for endangered West Indian manatees. The springs allow these docile creatures to escape winter’s cold and serve as a place to mate and nurse their young. In winter, Citrus has the world’s largest collection of manatees in their natural environment and their local Florida neighbors are anxious to say hello. Few people realize that Citrus County is the only place in America that you can legally enter the water with these gentle giants. Here’s how:

Kayak, Canoe or Paddleboard: Some of the best places to see manatees this way is in King’s Bay in Crystal River, the Chassahowitzka River, and the Homosassa River. Guides and rental companies have everything that is needed for a manatee-filled adventure.

Swimming Tours: Although visitors can go it alone, guides are recommended. Guides are knowledgeable about federal regulations for manatee interactions, and swim-with tour operators show all guests a short manatee manners video.

View From Land: One of the most popular places for manatees to go in the winter is Three Sisters Springs in Crystal River. Visitors to the property can’t enter the water from land, but they get an unbeatable view of the springs and manatees from the boardwalk that surrounds the area.

Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park: This is home to captive manatees, many of which are being rehabilitated and will eventually be released back into the wild. It’s the perfect place to see manatees by land, no wetsuit required! Manatees meander in the headspring of the Homosassa River and relax in their custom pools.

Lucky for residents of GlenLakes, these gentle giants are just a short drive away. With visiting grandchildren and guests, it’s a real thrill to experience the natural wildlife in person. When the eco tour is complete, it’s time to hit the links, and GlenLakes newest home sites are located between the 10th, 11th and 12th fairways. Each estate home offers outstanding views and plenty of room for friends and family visiting from the north. For more information on living the Florida lifestyle at GlenLakes, click here

 

On the other side of the glass, the mermaids, with their glimmering tails and flowing hair swim through the cool, blue water. They perform with grace, moving effortlessly. The Weeki Wachee Florida mermaid show started in 1947. Former U.S. Navy sailor Newton Perry came a year earlier to the springs where he experimented with breathing through an air hose supplied by an air compressor while under water. He soon perfected “hose breathing” and built an under water theater in the spring.

Perry scouted girls with strong swimming skills and trained them to perform underwater, including dancing, eating and drinking, and avoiding the occasional alligator. Girls came from around the world to audition. Today the show wows more than 250,000 visitors each year, a popular choice for the residents of nearby GlenLakes with visiting grandchildren and family members.

Although Weeki Wachee has long been known as the home of the mermaids, this pristine natural area on the Florida Gulf Coast has become home to many nature lovers who have discovered the beautiful natural surroundings. Crystal clear springs draw visitors from around the globe for kayaking, hiking and swimming with the gentle manatee.

The Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge surrounds the gated golf community of GlenLakes, providing immediate access to secluded trails that lead to pristine beaches that are protected in perpetuity. Bird watching, boating and a variety of eco-tours create an enviable address for homeowners seeking a slice of Florida paradise that will remain in its natural state.

These mesmerizing maidens perform their take on Disney films in a 30-minute show three times a day.. An obvious choice and fan favorite is the “The Little Mermaid.” It had such a successful run that is has returned this year. Another favorite was “Pocahontas Meets The Little Mermaid.” After every show, families line up to pose with the mystical ladies.

There’s no need to be a “poor unfortunate soul” for missing out on the famous Weeki Wachee mermaids. Better yet, make the move to GlenLakes, and you might just become friends with a world-famous mermaid.

For more information on entertainment in the GlenLakes’ area click here to preview the interactive map.